U.S. Landlords Trying To Coerce Cash-Strapped Tenants Into ‘Sex-For-Rent’ Agreements
by A. Jamieson
April 15, 2020
“We’ve received more cases at our office in the last two days than we have in the last two years,” one women’s advocate told BuzzFeed News.
…And now some landlords are allegedly using the crisis as an opportunity to sexually harass vulnerable tenants struggling to afford rent.
“We have seen an uptick in sexual harassment,” said Sheryl Ring, the legal director at Open Communities, a legal aid and fair housing agency just north of Chicago. Ring said her organization has seen a threefold increase in sexual harassment complaints related to housing in the last month.
“Since this started, they [landlords] have been taking advantage of the financial hardships many of their tenants have in order to coerce their tenants into a sex-for-rent agreement — which is absolutely illegal,” said Ring.