Valencia et al. v. City of Springfield, Illinois was a case argued in February 2018 and decided in March 2018 in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit. Mrs. Valencia, a legal representative of one of the plaintiffs, filed the suit on behalf of three residents of the Noble home that had disabilities affecting their quality of life and functioning. The defendant had previously decided that the residents could not live in a detached single-family residence. The rationale for that was the presence of a group home for disabled adults within a 600-feet radius of the plaintiffs’ place of living (United States Department of Justice). With that in mind, the plaintiffs’ position is that the decision constituted discrimination on the basis of disability status and violated federal law peculiar to fair housing (U.S. DOJ). The defendant’s position is that the interpretation of the city’s zoning code as discriminatory is incorrect and that the plaintiffs could not be considered a family to occupy the residence legally. Both parties’ discrimination-related theories and positions were carefully examined and assessed.
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In terms of the outcomes, two courts were involved in the resolution. In the decision by the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois, the plaintiffs obtained a preliminary injunction that prohibited the defendant from proceeding with the formal eviction process (U.S. DOJ). The court decided that the continuation of the eviction procedure would cause severe harm that could not be adequately compensated by any relief measures after the trial’s completion. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit confirmed the preceding decision’s correctness and concluded on the preliminary injunction’s reasonableness (U.S. DOJ). The appellate court considered the defendant’s theory regarding the plaintiffs’ attempts to seek exclusive opportunities for accommodation that would never be offered to non-disabled individuals as an untenable idea. Therefore, both outcomes favored the plaintiffs and their perception of eviction as a discriminatory act.
United States Department of Justice. “Valencia v. City of Springfield Court of Appeals Decision.” Justice.gov, 2018, Web.