Treating Neighbors as Nuisances: Troubling Applications of Criminal Activity Nuisance Ordinances
Thousands of cities nationwide enforce Criminal Activity Nuisance Ordinances that catalyze the eviction of tenants when there are two or more police visits to a property. We report findings of an empirical study of enforcement of nuisance ordinances, finding that cities often target survivors of domestic violence, people experiencing a mental health crisis, nonprofit organizations serving people with disabilities, people seeking life-saving medical intervention to prevent a fatal drug overdose, and non-criminal behavior such as playing basketball or being “disrespectful.” Codifying into public policy a path to homelessness in these instances is not only cruel and counterproductive, but likely violates the Fair Housing Act and the Constitution.
Mead, Joseph; Hatch, Megan; Tighe, J. Rosie; Pappas, Marissa; Andrasik, Kristi; and Bonham, Elizabeth, "Treating Neighbors as Nuisances: Troubling Applications of Criminal Activity Nuisance Ordinances" (2018). Urban Publications. 0 1 2 3 1534.