Complaints by Rhode Island’s veterans that they had been discriminated against in housing decisions because of their veteran status prompted legislation to make such discrimination illegal. In February and May, the ACLU testified before the House Veterans Affairs and Senate Judiciary committee, respectively, in support of this legislation. The ACLU further noted that attempts to limit the legislation to protect only those veterans given Honorable or General discharges could result in discrimination against veterans given Other Than Honorable administrative discharges, including those who are pushed out because of injuries suffered in combat or discharged for being gay under the now-defunct “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. The House passed a version of the legislation in June, but it died in the Senate without receiving a committee vote.
Military Status Housing Discrimination (H 7393A, S 2809)
Representative Jan Malik and Senator Walter Felag
Passed House, Died in Senate