California State Assembly Bill 291 (Chiu) would improve protections for immigrant tenants against intimidation and retaliation by landlords. This bill proactively addresses rising dangers facing both documented and undocumented immigrants in California.
We are in an era in which immigration status, or perceived status, is increasingly being used to attack members of our communities. Tenants are particularly vulnerable to abuse. Landlords have a great deal of private, sensitive information about tenants, including their social security numbers, financial information, the times they’re at home, and the identities of their families and friends. Tenants have few protections against misuse of this information and abuses of power by landlords. Retaliation, threats to report immigrant tenants to immigration authorities, and illegal evictions are a reality for many immigrant tenants.
Under AB 291, tenants would gain stronger protections against discrimination based on immigration status, including a ban on questions about immigration status in housing-related cases; a prohibition on attorneys and landlords reporting, or threatening to report, tenants to immigration authorities; and a ban on disclosing information about tenants’ citizenship status to the authorities. Landlords who report their tenants to immigration authorities could be sued for damages and referred for potential criminal prosecution.
Use the form below to send a letter to your Assemblymember to urge them to support AB 291: