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Estimate of Housing Discrimination Against Same-Sex Couples
Samantha Friedman (au)
Report of the first large-scale, paired-testing study to assess housing discrimination against same-sex couples in metropolitan rental markets via advertisements on the Internet. The research is based on 6,833 e-mail correspondence tests conducted in 50 metropolitan markets across the U.S. from June through Oct. 2011. For each correspondence test, two e-mails were sent to the housing provider, each inquiring about the availability of the unit advertised on the Internet. The only difference between the two e-mails was the sexual orientation of the couple making the inquiry. This study provides the first direct evidence of discriminatory treatment of same-sex couples compared with the treatment of heterosexual couples when searching for rental housing advertised on the Internet in the U.S. It provides an important initial observation of discrimination based on sexual orientation at the threshold stage of the rental transaction and is a point of departure for future research on housing discrimination against same-sex couples. Figures and tables.
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