Amy Glassman Podcast


Is Fair Housing Fair?

Amy Glassman Ep. 62 - Is fair housing fair? What is disparate impact and how can housing authorities and landlords determine the application of it?  What is reasonable accommodation? How is HUD conducting market testing to determine racial discrimination? Amy M. Glassman is a partner with Ballard Spahr, a law firm with more than 650 attorneys and 15 offices. Amy has had extensive experience with HUD regulatory and statutory compliance issues including disparate impact. She assists clients on matters such as federal procurement requirements, relationships with public housing affiliates and instrumentalities, uses of program income, the Uniform Relocation Act (URA), and the Section 8 programs. She also advises clients on litigation or potential litigation matters including HUD programs. Amy advises clients on fair housing, accessibility, and disability issues related to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and Fair Housing Act, including policy development and fair housing investigations. She also defends clients in HUD debarment actions and Office of Inspector General audits and investigations.

Top Takeaways:

    • Understanding Disparate Impact and ways you can avoid it as a landlord
    • The complexities of data and expenses that make Disparate Impact cases rare
    • Why it is advisable and cheaper to approve housing requests connected with disability
    • The importance of more housing assistant and stability now more than ever as highlighted by the pandemic
    • The importance of being flexible and willing to take opportunities that will get you to your destination if your intended plan doesn't work

Listen in to properly understand Disparate Impact and the Fair Housing Act and how you can avoid being sued because of it as a landlord.

"There are a lot of women in powerful roles within housing authorities and developers that are not reflected in other industries." -Amy M. Glassman

Best Female Attorney in Fair Housing Podcast

Amy's transactional practice includes extensive work with public housing authorities on portfolio repositioning strategies and implementation, including mixed-finance redevelopment projects, HUD demolition and disposition applications, and conversions to Section 8 using various methods, including disposition, voluntary conversion, HUD's Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program. She also advises clients on a variety of HUD multifamily housing matters involving project-based rental assistance, including HAP contract transfers and assignments.

Prior to becoming a lawyer, Amy worked as an affordable housing consultant at the Cambridge Housing Authority and at TAG Associates.

The District of Columbia Court of Appeals and Superior Court of the District of Columbia named Ms. Glassman to the Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll in 2012 and 2014, for providing 50 hours or more of pro bono service in the prior calendar year.

Learn how appropriation for fair housing testing is needed.

Key Moments:

Amy shares the life-changing experience that attracted her into the housing sector while still in college [2:58]

She explains the Disparate Impact as a cause of action in the Fair Housing Act, what it means, and the new rule that'll bring it more into compliance [6:01]

How you can avoid being sued because of having a Disparate Impact by establishing nuance policies as a landlord [8:00]

The reasons why Disparate Impact cases are not very common [10:22]

Why HUD as the primary reinforcer of Fair Housing law should take on the important role of supporting systemic investigations [12:04]

Understanding what to consider when approving or denying housing requests connected with disabilities [14:26]

The importance of prioritizing assistance to correct discrimination issues that might have led other certain populations being disproportionately affected by disaster [16:36]

The Moving to Work program standardization and its failure to achieve its originally intended changes [19:00]

Amy explains why even though she works in social justice and primarily with women she hasn't experienced any form of discrimination [21:56]

She narrates one of her success stories in housing that happened during the pandemic and another one that was not so successful [23:47]

Why divisiveness is society's greatest problem today in many areas [34:14]

Amy advises young people to go after what they want and find mentors to guide them in their career choices [36:06]


Ballardspahr Website Amy Glassman



GW Law Professor

Housing Plus Blog

Affordable Housing Finance

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