Neuhtah Opiotennione v. Bozzuto Management Company, et al.

On December 17, 2021, the ACLU, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, National Fair Housing Alliance, and Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights submitted an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit supporting a 55-year-old prospective tenant who alleged that nine landlords routinely and intentionally excluded older people from receiving Facebook housing advertisements for their apartment complexes.

The ACLU’s amicus brief discussed the issue of “digital redlining” – a term which describes the use of technology to perpetuate discrimination against historically marginalized groups, including through the use of discriminatory ad-targeting tools on social media. The amicus brief described the long history of discriminatory advertising practices in housing and employment, and how the same harms arise from digital redlining through ad targeting tools on Facebook and other social media. The amicus brief also provided context on how the landlords’ use of Facebook’s ad platform constituted a form of digital redlining by excluding certain prospective tenants from viewing housing ads on the basis of their age and other protected characteristics. The brief was filed by All Rise Trial and Appellate on behalf of the amici.

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