(TheConservativeTimes.org) – A New York City landlord has advertised a considerably upscale apartment for rent. The catch? Prospective tenants cannot cook meat or fish.
The vegan landlord’s unusual listing of the apartments in the Fort Greene neighborhood in Brooklyn attracted the attention of The New York Times. Vegans eat no foods that derive from animals.
The landlord, Michal Arieh Lerer, was described in the listing as a “wonderful vegan landlord.” The landlord’s broker, Andrea Kelly, told the Times that the rule is not a ban on meat in all circumstances but rather a prohibition against cooking meat or fish in the apartment because the landlord does not like the smell of meat cooking drifting upstairs.
In other words, bringing home takeout products that include meat is fine, but cooking meat in the apartment is not.
The landlord refused to talk to The New York Times, and both the landlord and broker declined to speak to the New York Post, which also reported on the matter. Fellow New York residents did voice their disapproval to the Post about the unique rule for the apartments, which are currently listed at $4,500 and $5,750.
Corey, a superintendent for a building in the same area, said, “you can’t tell people what to eat and what not to eat.”
Bike mechanic Scott Fu, 29, who also lives in the area, questioned the legality of the strange rule, asking if one could “outlaw smells.”
According to the city’s human rights law, the vegan landlord’s rule appears to be legal, as it is not one of the 14 listed characteristics landlords are forbidden to discriminate against.
According to the law, those characteristics are color, age, creed/religion, alienage or citizenship status, disabilities, family status, gender/gender identity, lawful occupation, lawful source of income, marital status, national origin, partnership status, race, and sexual orientation.
Restricting what tenants can and cannot cook, supposedly, does not constitute unlawful discrimination under the law. And as The New York Times noted, the law also allows landlords to not rent to people who smoke. Just like smokers, it would appear that food preferences also do not constitute legal protection.
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