A federal appeals court has given landlords in Seattle permission to ask potential tenants about their criminal records.
The decision came in a case that challenged the city’s ban on requesting such information.
However, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has determined that’s unconstitutional, and the government “cannot prevent landlords from asking about applicants’ criminal histories when selecting tenants.”
“The Ninth Circuit’s decision recognizes that the First Amendment protects the right to ask questions and receive information relevant to our livelihoods,” said Ethan Blevins, an attorney at Pacific Legal. “The government does not get to decide what information people can or cannot possess.”
Seattle in 2017 adopted its so-called “Fair Chance Housing Ordinance.” It banned landlords from asking about or considering prospective tenants’ criminal backgrounds.
WND is now on Trump’s Truth Social! Follow us @WNDNews
“This meant that landlords could not base a rental decision on factors like personal safety or the well-being of other tenants. For Kelly Lyles and several other small-scale housing providers, this gave them little to no choice over their future tenants,” the foundation report explained.
Lyles, an artist by trade, earns income by renting out a small single-family home that she owns in Seattle. As a single woman and survivor of sexual assault, she has the right to know if her rental applicants have engaged in crimes that might endanger her, she charged in the lawsuit.
The city’s move was so extreme it even made it unlawful to refuse to rent to someone who was on a sex offender registry.
It further banned landlords “from making decisions based on their own personal safety, the safety of other tenants, or discomfort with convictions for ‘sex offenses, crimes against children, or even hate crimes,'” the report said.
The lawsuit said the city’s plan violated the Due Process and Free Speech provisions of the constitutions of Washington and the U.S.
The city also had tried to force landlords to rent to the “first” applicant for an opening.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Question: Why do the political and corporate leaders of America – long the freest, most successful, most prosperous and most Christian nation in history – bow and scrape before China, a ruthless, communist, totalitarian and explicitly atheistic dictatorship openly committed to ruling the world, including America?
The astonishing answers come into focus only when one contemplates both the unprecedented level of political and financial corruption in America’s ruling class (multiple Biden family members received $31 million in payola from China), and simultaneously the communist Chinese government’s brilliantly devious methods of unconventional total warfare, by which China is stealthily infiltrating, subverting, corrupting and colonizing the United States of America.
The China threat has rarely been more dramatically or pointedly documented than in the sensational March issue of WND’s critically acclaimed monthly Whistleblower magazine, titled “HOW CHINA IS CONQUERING AMERICA.” Whistleblower is available in both the popular print edition and a state-of-the-art digital version, either single issues or discounted annual subscriptions.
For 25 years, WND has boldly brought you the news that really matters. If you appreciate our Christian journalists and their uniquely truthful reporting and analysis, please help us by becoming a WND Insider!
Content created by the WND News Center is available for re-publication without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].
This article was originally published by the WND News Center.