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Deconstructing Discrimination within Common Interest Communities: Hill v. Community of Damien of Molokai: A Case Study on Combating AIDS Panic in Your Neighborhood
INTEGRATING DOCTRINE AND DIVERSITY: INCLUSION & EQUITY IN THE LAW SCHOOL CLASSROOM (2021)
  • Dylan O Malagrino, Charleston School of Law
Abstract
As a serious issue of diversity/inclusion/equity, the fear of AIDS continues to cause people and communities to panic.  These communities erect “walls” wherever possible between themselves and those who are undesirable people—often persons with AIDS are stigmatized on multiple levels, for example, by having(or wrongly thought to have)a widely known serious disease, and presumptively (also often wrongly) being in a disenfranchised group already, such as being a racial minority, gay, a drug addict, and/or someone in poverty. 

In Hill, the Supreme Court of New Mexico considered two primary questions: (1) whether four unrelated residents using property within a common interest community as a group home for persons living with AIDS was a “single family residence” for the purposes of the private covenant in the community’s Declaration of Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions; and, (2) whether the private restrictive covenant, if enforced against the group home residents, would violate § 3604(f)(1) of the Fair Housing Act by discriminating on the basis of handicap.  First, the Court concluded that a group home for four unrelated residents complies with the meaning of the “single family residence” covenant on the property. Second, the Court concluded that, even if having four unrelated residents living in a group home violates the private restrictive covenant, such a covenant would be handicap-based discrimination violating the Fair Housing Act as applied to the four unrelated residents living with AIDS because refusing to enforce the covenant against the group home would impose no undue hardship on the other neighbors, and those neighbors could reasonably accommodate the group home.
Keywords
  • discrimination,
  • common interest communities,
  • AIDS,
  • restrictive covenant,
  • Fair Housing Act
Publication Date
Spring 2021
Editor
Nicole, P. Dyszlewski
Publisher
Carolina Academic Press
ISBN
978-1-5310-1701-9
Citation Information
Dylan O Malagrino. "Deconstructing Discrimination within Common Interest Communities: Hill v. Community of Damien of Molokai: A Case Study on Combating AIDS Panic in Your Neighborhood" Durham, North CarolinaINTEGRATING DOCTRINE AND DIVERSITY: INCLUSION & EQUITY IN THE LAW SCHOOL CLASSROOM (2021) p. 101 - 110
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/dylan-malagrino/31/