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Governor Cuomo signs legislation prohibiting housing discrimination against persons with a disability who have support animals

blind woman walking with guide dog

Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation on August 11 which would prohibit discrimination by housing providers against people living with disabilities who use support animals.

Housing providers must now provide a reasonable accommodation by permitting a support animal to live in a home that otherwise would have prohibited pets.

“New Yorkers have zero tolerance for discrimination of any type and this measure will protect some of the most vulnerable among us who require a support animal to help function in their daily lives,” Governor Cuomo said. “With this legislation, we take one more step towards a stronger, fairer and more compassionate New York for all.”

The Division of Human Rights has found in appropriate circumstances where it is reasonable to permit such an accommodation to a housing provider’s “no pets” policy, where medical evidence or other professional evidence shows that the animal aids the person with the disability by alleviating the symptoms or effects of a disability.

“I like to thank Governor Cuomo for signing this important piece of legislation which will protect the rights of individuals who depend on an animal to provide emotional support and/or comfort on a daily basis. Discrimination on the basis of any disability is against humanity and no one should be subjected to such treatment especially within the confines of their own home. People who utilize these animals do so for the overall well-being of their physical, emotional and mental health. I hope this legislation brings individuals a sense of ease knowing they are now protected.”said Senator Monica R. Martinez.

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