Mayor Bill de Blasio, Council Member Jumaane Williams, Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Public Advocate Letitia James announced an amendment to the NYC Human Rights Law to include current or prior uniformed service members as protected class in housing, employment and public accommodations, according to recent news. The bill is the City’s latest effort to support and protect active service members and veterans reentering civilian life.
Employment is a continuous challenge for many veterans. According to the US Department of Labor, nearly 14,000 veterans are unemployed across New York State. And housing isn’t much better. According to the latest census, there were approximately 2,500 homeless veterans across New York State.
“Veterans across the country routinely face obstacles in employment, housing and public accommodations,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “We don’t tolerate that in New York City. These brave men and women put their lives on the line for our country and they deserve respect and dignity. This new law will ensure all military and other uniformed service members, both returned and active, can live and work free from discrimination in New York City.”
This bill is New York City’s latest effort in removing unnecessary obstacles to housing, employment and public accommodation for veterans and active service members. The government wants to ensure that these outstanding members of our community are cared for and have the resources they need to not only live but thrive in the community again.
“Adding uniformed service to our city’s comprehensive human rights laws will send a powerful message to our veterans and military members that New York City supports, honors, and protects them,” said Kristen Rouse, U.S. Army Veteran, Founding Director of the NYC Veterans Alliance.