INDIANAPOLIS–An Indianapolis landlord accused of soliciting sex in exchange for rent has agreed to pay $45,900 to settle a lawsuit.
Abigail Savage said the landlord, Henry Long, offered to cancel her rent payment if she had sex with him. She had been furloughed from her job in Irvington back in March because of the coronavirus, which made it more difficult for her to earn money.
Long denies the accusations but agreed to pay the $45,900. He is required to hire a property manager to handle the day-to-day operations of his rental properties. He is also not allowed to have contact with any tenants or potential tenants.
The Fair Housing Center of Central Indiana Executive Director, Amy Nelson, says the settlement is a victory for many, but this scenario happens too often.
“They may risk what housing they have, so it’s hard for people to speak up. That’s especially happening right now during the pandemic,” said Nelson. “The important thing to remember is that they are not alone. What they are experiencing is wrong and it needs to be stopped.”
Nelson applauds Savage for coming forward.
“She stood up and said ‘no, I’m not going to let this happen.’ She stood up, spoke out, and we were able to get this resolution,” said Nelson.
An estimated 4 million housing discrimination incidents happen each year, according to data from the National Fair Housing Alliance. Approximately 30,000 incidents – less than 1% – are reported.