‘Gay Flatmate Wanted’ Ads Break Equality Laws

James Hall, Telegraph (London), July 3, 2012

‘To let’ adverts often specify that a flatmate should be from a preferred ethnic group or have a particular sexual orientation.

However human rights experts have warned that under the Equality Act 2010, it is unlawful for someone letting or sub-letting a property to “discriminate against or victimize” interested parties based on their religion, race, age, marital status, sexuality or physical ability.

This means that any ‘to let’ adverts that specify that a lodger should be gay, single or from a particular country fall foul of the law.

Dr Nuno Ferreira, an expert in discrimination law at the University of Manchester, said that the act covers adverts placed by absentee landlords, letting agents, live-in landlords and tenants looking for housemates.

“It doesn’t make a difference if the landlord lives in the premises or not,” Dr Ferriera told the BBC.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) said that under the Equality Act it is illegal for a person who is renting out a room to treat one group of people less favourably than another group of people.

A spokesman for the watchdog said that if an advert was placed in a newsagent or a magazine specifically asking for a gay flatmate, for example, then somebody could validly make a complaint to the commission.

Chris Norris, head of policy at the National Landlords Association, said: “Tenants looking for new housemates should focus on describing the house’s current occupants so that potential applicants can judge for themselves whether they would be a suitable fit or not.”

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  • Jamal Wilkerson

    Shouldn’t the same public policy apply to dating and marriage?  Why should a man or woman be allowed to discriminate in choosing a mate? 

    Dating services that allow a person to choose someone to contact on the basis of a photo or description that includes race, height, weight, profession, etc., should be prohibited immediately.

    Perhaps governments should require each citizen to have sex with a different person each night — a person chosen by the Bureau of Equal Sexual Opportunity.  Of course 50% of the match-ups would have to be homosexual, despite any unfair preference a citizen might have.

  • loyalwhitebriton

    Actually, I have no problem with “Gay flatmate wanted”, or “Black flatmate wanted”, or “Muslim flatmate wanted”, or whatever kind of flatmate is wanted. I believe in the freedom of association.
    One should be able to advertise for all of the above, as long as one is also allowed to say “White British flatmate wanted”. Let’s be fair to everyone.

    • Kurt Plummer


      Actually, I have no problem with “Gay flatmate wanted”, or “Black flatmate wanted”, or “Muslim flatmate wanted”, or whatever kind of flatmate is wanted. I believe in the freedom of association.

      Exactly So.

      I would go farther however in saying that it’s a waste of the renter’s as the lessor’s time as the Leasing Party will simply sort through the chaff to define their own choice, regardless.

      As is perfectly correct when YOU OWN THE PROPERTY AT RENT.

      Given that there is no arguing with the statistics of crime as applied to certain population groups in certain geographic densities, the reality must be assumed that this is in fact a deliberate precursor and will be followed by a ‘next step’ which is specified racial distribution quotas to bring about a ‘more diverse and vibrant whole’.

      Does Britain have Section 8 voucher equivalents?

      Of course, I doubt if there are just oodles of whites looking to invade ‘Asian’ and Eastern European enclaves in your urban landscapes especially, so the next question must obviously be: who has the most residual real estate to dump on the market at ultra-cheap rates prior to executing white-flight so that the rich and shameless can snap up housing on the ha-penny?

      White, native-born, British interests are being used and sold as bargaining chips for pure cash profit in England, Social Engineering and Political Influence be hanged.

      There is nothing left of the great sense of “We Are BRITAIN!” cross-class unity that made 1940 possible.

      • loyalwhitebriton

        From what I understand of you Section-8 housing, it is the equivalent of our Council Housing provision. In my home city, we have a large Council house estate which, when built in the 60’s, was the biggest in Britain. Council houses are subsidised by local taxpayers, and cater to people who either can’t afford to buy their own property

        • loyalwhitebriton

                              I was not able to post my full reply to Kurt (the above is only the first paragraph), I kept getting “Can’t post this comment, an error has occured..”. Then I’m edited by the moderator. So I’m not sure what went on there.

          • From the very slow traffic among unregistered people tonight, I surmise Disqus is acting goofy.  It isn’t the usual evening crazies — It actually had the evening crazies this morning and afternoon, and straightened out around rush hour.

        •  Council housing (UK) = Public housing (USA)

          Section 8 is subsidies for private lease agreements.  I don’t know if the UK has an equivalent, though I know more about British public policy than I should.  QUANGOs and NEETs…my two favorite acronyms.

          • loyalwhitebriton

            Council housing is the equivalent to your Section-8, from what I understand. Local taxpayers subsidise those individuals who can neither afford a mortgage nor pay rent to a private landlord.
            QUANGOs, perfected par excellance under Labour, are a bane of British society; Oxford educated “civil servants” doing pointless non-jobs for a high salary and a gold-plated pension.
            NEETS? Can’t blame those not in employment, education, or training.
            They are the victims of a mass immigration and a deliberate system of dumbed down “education”.
            This country (formerly called “Great Britain”) is awful, mate, to be honest. I love the Union Jack, but hate the present day reality. 

  • 3 bisexual blond or redhead female flatmates wanted

  • Sloppo

    I’m not “gay”, but I think it is important for someone who is to specify that is what they want in a flatmate.  That makes it easier for people like myself to avoid that sort of situation.  I don’t know why any heterosexual person who would want to rent it.

  • Nor should we discriminate against murders, rapists, pedophiles, arsonists, con-men, prostututes, drug users, alcoholics, hoarders, slobs and people with bad credit who don’t pay their rent.

    Afterall, none of these things are as bad as the capital crime of discrimination or (Heaven Forbid), a lack of diversity,

  • frank pucillo

    I guess the movie Single white female should be banned like Mein Kamf as a symbol of hate of hate.Humans can no longer have normal emotions.We should be treated like domestic animals.

  • In the 90’s when  moved to the city where I live now, I used an apartment locator service someone referred me to.  One apartment they sent me to look at belonged to an old man who had no problem telling me that he used that particular service to screen out blacks.  They wouldn’t refer blacks to him.  That was 96 or 97.  I’m sure services like that still exist.