City of Harrisburg, PA
Dauphin County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Harrisburg by Ord. No. 17-1992. Amendments noted where applicable.]
CROSS-REFERENCES
Pennsylvania Human Relations Act: Act of Oct. 27, 1955, P.L. 744, as amended (43 P.S. § 951 et seq.).
Rental housing discrimination: see 35 P.S. § 1680.402a.
Service uniform discrimination: see Crimes Codes (18 Pa.C.S.A. § 7323).

§ 4-101.1 Legislative findings.

A. 
The population of the City consists of every race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, age, marital status, familial status, sexual preference, handicap or disability, and possession of a general education development certificate, some of whom by reason of their race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, age, marital status, familial status, possession of a general education development certificate, sexual preference/orientation, handicap and disability, or association with or advocacy on behalf of persons in these categories, are discriminated against in employment opportunities, places of public accommodation, housing facilities, education, obtaining loans, housing or housing-related financing or mortgage requirements, which may include but are not limited to insurance requirements, and the enjoyment of equality of opportunity relating thereto.
B. 
Discrimination because of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, age, handicap or disability or the use of guide or support animals, marital status, familial status, sexual preference/orientation, or association with or advocacy on behalf of persons in these categories in employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and lending practices is contrary to the laws and policies of the City.
C. 
Discrimination in employment prevents the gainful employment of large segments of the citizens of the City, tends to impair the City's productive capacity, reduces the public revenues, imposes substantial financial burden upon the public for relief and welfare, and tends to create breaches of the peace and depressed living conditions which breed crime, vice, juvenile delinquency, and disease, and is detrimental to the public safety, economic growth and general welfare of the City.
D. 
Discrimination in housing results in overcrowded, segregated housing with substandard, unsafe and unsanitary living conditions which cause increased mortality, disease, crime, vice, juvenile delinquency, fire and risk of fire, intergroup tensions, conflicts and similar evils, all of which increase the cost of government and reduce the public revenues and result in injury to the public safety, health and welfare of the City.
E. 
Discrimination involving places of public accommodation, as herein defined, causes loss of access to services, humiliation, embarrassment and inconvenience to citizens and visitors, tends to create breaches of the peace, intergroup tensions, conflicts and similar evils, and is detrimental to the public safely, general welfare and economic growth of the City.
F. 
Discrimination in educational institutions precludes equality of educational opportunities for all students, whether personally experienced by them or when observed being practiced by others. It is recognized, however, that there is a fundamental American right for members of various religious faiths to establish and maintain educational institutions exclusively or primarily for students of their own religious faith. In such institutions, students should have equal opportunity to attend therein and participate without discrimination because of race, color, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, handicap or disability or the use of guide or support animals, marital status, familial status, general education development certificate, sexual preference/orientation, and age.
G. 
Discrimination in lending or in other extensions of credit or in the terms or conditions of credit by lending institutions denies persons the opportunity to fulfill and maintain their economic well-being.

§ 4-101.2 Discrimination prohibited.

A. 
It is hereby declared to be the policy of the City, in the exercise of its powers for the protection of the public safety and the general welfare, for the maintenance of peace and good government and for the promotion of the City's trade, commerce and manufacture, to promote the right and opportunity of all persons to participate in the social, cultural, recreational, and economic life of the City and to assure equal opportunity for all persons in employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and obtaining loans and extensions of credit, free from discrimination because of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, handicap or disability or the use of guide or support animals, marital status, familial status, sexual preference/orientation, or age or association with or advocacy on behalf of any group protected by this code.
B. 
To accomplish these goals it shall be the public policy of the City to prohibit discrimination because of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, handicap or disability or the use of guide or support animals, marital status, familial status, sexual preference/orientation or age or association with or advocacy on behalf of any group protected by this code in areas relating to employment, housing, public accommodations, education and lending practices.

§ 4-101.3 Liberal construction.

This code shall be deemed remedial and shall be liberally construed so as to effectuate its spirit and intent.

§ 4-101.4 Scope and application.

This code applies to discriminatory practices including but not limited to discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and lending which occur within the territorial limits of the City and to employment contracted for, performed or to be performed within these limits, or by those contracting with the City, and also applies to any county or governmental subdivision in Dauphin, Cumberland and Perry Counties which by majority vote of the proper body adopts this code or elects to be covered by its terms.

§ 4-101.5 Interpretation.

Nothing in this code shall be deemed to repeal or supersede any of the provisions of any existing or hereafter adopted City ordinance, City charter or any law of this commonwealth relating to discrimination. However, if the complainant institutes any other action based on such grievance without resorting to the procedure provided in this code, such complainant may not subsequently resort to the procedures herein. In the event of a conflict between the interpretation of this code and the interpretation of a similar provision contained in any state law, the interpretation of the provision in the state law shall apply.

§ 4-101.6 Definitions.

As used in this code, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated, unless a different meaning clearly appears from the context. Any word not defined herein shall have the definition contained in the glossary, Chapter 1-302, or the ordinary dictionary definition.
ACCESSIBLE
Being in compliance with the applicable standards set forth in the following:
[Added 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
A. 
The Fair Housing Act (Public Law 90-284, 42 U.S.C. § 3601 et seq.).
B. 
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-336, 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq.).
C. 
The act of September 1, 1965 (Public Law 459, No. 235), titled, as amended, "An Act Requiring That Certain Buildings and Facilities Adhere To Certain Principles, Standards, and Specifications To Make the Same Accessible To and Usable by Persons With Physical Handicaps, and Providing For Enforcement."[1]
ADVERTISEMENT or ADVERTISING
Any advertisement and any similar written, printed, taped or broadcasted communication, notice, statement or the like which is disseminated (whether published, printed, circulated, issued, displayed, posted or mailed) for the purpose of promoting housing activity, including but not limited to rentals, leases, and sales.
[Added 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
ADVERTISER
Any person who places, publishes, broadcasts, or similarly causes to be disseminated by any other means an advertisement or advertising as defined in this section.
[Added 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
ADVOCACY
The advancement or assertion, not otherwise unlawful, whether written or oral, of rights protected under this code.
AGE
Person 40 years of age or older and shall also include any other person so protected by further amendment to the Federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act.[2]
[Amended 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
AGGRIEVED PERSON
Any person who claims to be injured or believes that he/she will be injured by a discriminatory practice.
ASSOCIATION WITH
Any affiliation or perceived affiliation, formal or informal, by occupancy, proximity or advocacy with or on behalf of any of the groups protected under this code.
BONA FIDE OCCUPATIONAL QUALIFICATION
An employment qualification that is reasonably necessary to the essence of the normal operation of a particular business enterprise. The concept is to be construed narrowly in substantial conformity with the interpretation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
COMMERCIAL PROPERTY
Any building, structure or other facility, or portion thereof, which is used, occupied or intended, arranged, designed, or designated to be used or occupied for the purpose of operating a business, an office, a factory, or public accommodation and any vacant land which is offered for sale or lease or is held, intended or designated for the purpose of constructing or locating thereon any such building, facility, business, or public accommodation.
COMMISSION
The Harrisburg Human Relations Commission created by this code.
COMPLAINANT
Any person, including the Commission, who files a complaint pursuant to this code.
CONCILIATION
Any process which affords the opportunity to resolve the issues raised by either the complaint or the investigation of a complaint through informal negotiations involving the complainant, the respondent and the Commission.
CONCILIATION AGREEMENT
Any resolution of the issues through the conciliation process. All conciliation agreements must be in writing and signed by the respondent and the complainant and approved by the Commission in order to take effect.
DISCRIMINATE or DISCRIMINATION
Any act or omission, whether actually performed, attempted, or intended, which has been declared to be unlawful under this code, or any actual, attempted or intended difference in treatment based on race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, age, handicap or disability or the use of guide or support animals, marital status, familial status, general education development certificate (GED), or sexual preference/orientation, unless otherwise specifically provided, or any actual or attempted difference in treatment based on an individual's association with or advocacy on behalf of any of the groups protected under this code. The word "discriminate" or "discrimination" also includes any acts, activities or any act or omission intended or attempting to segregate any of the groups protected under this code.
EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTION
Any institution which accepts or solicits individuals to engage in the learning process, such as day-care centers, nursery schools, kindergartens, primary and secondary schools, high schools, academies, extension schools, camps, or any secretarial, business, vocational or trade school of post-secondary grade which is subject to the visitation, examination or inspection, or is or may be licensed, by the Commonwealth Department of Education, including any post-secondary school, college or university incorporated or chartered under any general law or special act of the General Assembly, except any religious or denominational educational institution as defined in this code.
EMPLOYER
Includes the City or any board, department, commission, authority, or school district thereof, or any person or any entity or organization employing four or more persons within the City. Contractors, subcontractors and independent contractors performing services within the City are also included under this definition. Any religious, fraternal, charitable, or sectarian corporation or association employing four or more persons and supported in whole or in part by government appropriations shall also be included under this definition. "Employer" does not include parents, spouse or children or any number of them. "Employer" does not include religious, fraternal, charitable, or sectarian corporations or associations not supported by government appropriations. "Employment" does not include the employment of individuals in domestic services.
EMPLOYMENT AGENCY
Any person regularly undertaking, with or without compensation, to procure, recruit, refer or place employees.
FAMILIAL STATUS
One or more individuals who have not attained the age of 18 years being domiciled with a parent or another person having legal custody of such individual or individuals or the designee of such parent or other person having such custody, with the written permission of such parent or other person. The protection afforded against discrimination on the basis of familial status shall apply to any person who is pregnant or is in the process of securing legal custody of any individual who has not attained the age of 18 years. The protection afforded to familial status shall also include groups of handicapped individuals, who may or may not be related, joining together in functioning household units, provided that such units are not separate apartments, who, if necessary, may require rehabilitation services, counseling, care, supervision, and therapy.
GED
General education development certificate.
HANDICAP or DISABILITY
Any actual, perceived, recorded, or assumed mental or physical impairment which significantly limits one or more of such person's major life activities and those who are currently recovering from drug or alcohol addiction. The phrase does not include persons currently using illegal substances. The phrase does include:
[Amended 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
A. 
Those who use guide or support animals; and
B. 
Any individuals who live with or care for or are otherwise associated with an individual who is handicapped or disabled.
[Amended 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
A. 
Any building, structure or facility, or portion thereof, which is used, occupied or intended, arranged or designed to be used as a residence or sleeping place of one or more individuals, groups or families, whether or not living independently of each other; and
B. 
Any vacant land offered for sale or lease or held for the purposes of constructing or locating thereon any such building, structure, mobile home site or facility.
HOUSING FOR OLDER PERSONS
Housing provided under any federal or state program that the Secretary of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development has determined is specifically designed and operated to assist elderly persons (as defined in the federal or state program), housing intended for and solely occupied by persons 62 years of age or older, or housing intended and operated for occupancy by at least one person 55 years of age or older per unit.
[Added 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
A. 
In determining whether housing qualifies as "housing for older persons" under this definition, the Harrisburg Human Relations Commission's requirements shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
(1) 
The existence of significant facilities and services specifically designed to meet the physical or social needs of older persons, or if the provision of such facilities and services is not practicable, that such housing is necessary to provide important housing opportunities for older persons; or
(2) 
A requirement that at least 80% of the units are occupied by at least one person 55 years of age or older per unit and the publication of, and adherence to, policies and procedures which demonstrate an intent by the owner or manager to provide housing for persons 55 years of age or older.
B. 
Housing shall not fail to meet the requirements for older persons by reason of:
(1) 
Persons residing in such housing as of the date of enactment of this code who do not meet the age requirements of Subsection A(1) or (2); or
(2) 
Being an unoccupied unit, provided that such units are reserved for occupancy by persons who meet the age requirements in Subsection A(1) or (2).
INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR
Any person who is subject to the provisions governing any of the professions and occupations regulated by state licensing laws enforced by the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs in the Department of State or is included in the Fair Housing Act (42 U.S.C. § 3601 et seq., Public Law 90-284).
[Added 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
LABOR ORGANIZATION
Any group or association which exists for the purpose in whole or in part of collective bargaining or in dealing with employers concerning grievances, terms or conditions of employment, or of other mutual aid or protection in relation to employment.
LENDING INSTITUTION
Any bank, insurance company, savings and loan association, or any organization engaged in making loans; any person or organization regularly engaged in the business of lending money, granting or extending credit or guaranteeing loans; and credit rating bureaus which supply information used to determine the eligibility for such loans or credit, including but not limited to real estate mortgages and financing or financing involving, using or otherwise relying upon real estate.
MARITAL STATUS
Includes:
A. 
The presence or absence of a religiously or civilly recognized marital union;
B. 
Single, divorced or separated status; or
C. 
Any association of two or more adults unless otherwise illegal under established and reasonable occupancy requirements.
NON-JOB-RELATED HANDICAP OR DISABILITY
As it relates to employment practices means any handicap or disability which does not substantially interfere with the ability to perform the essential functions of the position which a handicapped person applied for, is engaged in or has been engaged in. Uninsurability or increased cost of insurance under a group or employee insurance plan does not render a handicap or disability job-related.
OWNER
Includes any person or entity who is the owner, co-owner, lessee, sublessee, mortgagee, assignee, manager, agent, or any other person having an equitable or security interest in any housing accommodation or any person who otherwise has the authority to recommend or grant for consideration the right to use or occupy a housing accommodation. This definition shall include the City and its departments, boards, commissions and authorities.
PUBLIC ACCOMMODATION or PLACE OF PUBLIC ACCOMMODATION
Any place which is open and accepts or solicits the patronage of the general public, including but not limited to inns, taverns, resorts, places of recreation or amusement, hotels, motels, clinics, hospitals, swimming pools, barbershops, beauty parlors, retail stores, parks, bowling alleys, gymnasiums, public libraries, and all governmental facilities.
REAL ESTATE BROKER
Any person, partnership, corporation or any other organization or association which sells, purchases, exchanges, rents, negotiates, or in any way grants for consideration the right to purchase, use or occupy a housing accommodation, or offers or attempts to negotiate the sale, purchase, exchange, or rental of the real property of another, including real estate salespersons or agents or any person employed by a real estate broker to perform or assist in the performance of such broker's business.
RELIGION
A person's religious creed or the practices or observances with which a person expresses a religious creed.
RELIGIOUS OR DENOMINATIONAL EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTION
Any educational institution which is operated, supervised, controlled, or sustained primarily by a religious, sectarian or denominational organization; or one which is stated by the parent church or denomination to be and is, in fact, officially related to it by being represented on the board of that institution from which it has received substantial financial assistance; and one which has certified, in writing, to the Commission that it is a religious or denominational educational institution.
RENT
Includes lease, sublease, let or otherwise grant for consideration the right to occupy premises not owned by the occupant.
[Amended 12-11-2007 by Ord. No. 31-2007]
RESPONDENT
Any person or entity accused in a complaint of violating the provisions of this code or any other person or entity identified in the course of investigation.
SEX
The gender, male or female, of a person, including those persons who are changing or have changed their sex.
SEXUAL PREFERENCE/ORIENTATION
Male or female homosexuality, heterosexuality and bisexuality, by preference, practiced or as perceived by others.
STUDENT
Any person seeking admission to or in attendance at a school or educational institution.
[1]
Editor's Note: See now 35 P.S. § 7210.102 et seq.
[2]
Editor's Note: See 29 U.S.C. § 621 et seq.