This morning, I spoke with Cody Halsey, president of Cascade Community Management. One of his company's properties, an 18-unit building at 1530 SE Reedway, made the list after a Latino tester reported being asked to provide pay stubs to verify an income—something the white tester did not report being asked.
Halsey said the testers made their inquiries over the phone, because the Reedway property doesn't have an on-site management office, and that someone "who doesn't normally talk to prospective tenants" may have picked up and just forgot to mention pay stubs to the white tester. (That ambiguity is one reason why investigators and advocates say it takes far more than audit results to prove a case of housing discrimination.)
Halsey then said a lack of pay stubs wouldn't have been a deal breaker. "We rent to people who other companies have denied." He continued:
"We've taken pay stubs, tax returns, bank statements, a handwritten W-2 form. We had a young lady the other day look at one of our places. She says, 'I get paid in cash.' What do you do? She's a stripper. We would still need to verify your employment somehow. She says I have $100 in ones in my pocket—is that verification enough? We called company. And yes, she worked there."
"I was shocked, and so were all my employees," he said about learning his company made the city's list, "because we're so lenient and open."
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