Office of Civil Rights

The Office of Civil Rights, under the Center for Community Engagement and Civil Rights, consists of two units Fair Housing & Employment and Contract Compliance. These units work together to promote diversity and ensure equal access to all Boston Housing Authority (BHA) programs for applicants, residents and staff.

The Fair Housing & Employment Unit assists public housing and Leased Housing/Section 8 residents, applicants and employees to identify, review, and resolve alleged civil rights and fair housing violations. Any instance of discrimination is investigated and addressed through recommendations issued by the Fair Housing Unit. 

The Office of Civil Rights also runs a Mediation Program designed to help residents work out mutually agreeable solutions to their civil rights differences.

The Fair Housing and Employment Unit processes all requests for reasonable accommodations – special requests needed by people with disabilities. 

The Contract Compliance Unit ensures that all contractors are in compliance with prevailing wage requirements, the Minority Participation Program (MPP), the Minority Women's Business Enterprise (MWBE) program and Section 3 of the HUD Act of 1968. 

Phone: (617) 988-4383
24-hour Civil Rights Hotline: (617) 695-3531
TTY: (800) 545-1833 ext. 420
Email the Civil Rights Department

If you believe that you have experienced a violation of fair housing law or that you have experienced discrimination in housing based upon your race or color, ethnicity, ancestry, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, family status or composition, gender identity, religion, disability, genetic information, age, status as a veteran of the armed services, or status as a housing voucher holder, you may contact the following agencies:

Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination
One Ashburton Place
Sixth Floor, Room 601
Boston, MA 02108
617-994-6000 TTY: 617-994-6196
T: Government Center (Blue & Green Lines), Bowdoin (Blue Line), Park Street (Red & Green Lines), Buses 15, 39, 43, 55

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
Thomas P. O'Neill, Jr. Federal Building
10 Causeway Street, 3rd Floor
Boston, MA 02222-1092
617-994-8200 TTY: 617-565-5453
T: North Station (Orange & Green Lines)

If you are in the City of Boston and need assistance filing a housing discrimination complaint you may also visit:

If you are an applicant or tenant of the Boston Housing Authority (BHA), or hold a voucher administered by the BHA, you may contact:

Boston Housing Authority’s Office of Civil Rights
52 Chauncy Street
Boston, MA 02111, 9th Floor
617-988-4383, 24-hour Civil Rights Hotline: 617-695-3531, TTY: 800-545-1833 ext. 420
T: Downtown Crossing (Orange Line), Park Street (Red Line & Green lines), and State (Blue Line)

If you would like to request legal assistance in a fair housing matter, you may contact one of the following agencies:

Greater Boston Legal Services
197 Friend Street
Boston, MA 02114
617-371-1234 TDD: 617-371-1228
T: Haymarket (Orange & Green Lines), North Station (Orange & Green)

Harvard Tenant Advocacy Project
Pound Hall Room 009
1515 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
T: Harvard Square (Red Line), Buses 1, 66, 69, 86, 96

Suffolk University Housing Discrimination Program
120 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02108
617-884-7568, TTY 800-439-2370
T: Park Street (Red & Green Lines) and Government Center (Blue Line)

Harvard Legal Aid Bureau
23 Everett Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
T: Harvard Square (Red Line), Buses 1, 66, 69, 86, 96

If you need help with general housing issues contact one of the following agencies:

City of Boston Inspectional Services Department
1010 Massachusetts Avenue, 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02118
T: Buses 1, 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 41, CT3

Action for Boston Community Development
Housing & Homelessness Prevention
178 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02111
617-348-6347 TTY: 617-423-9215
T: Boylston (Green Line); Chinatown (Orange Line); Buses 43, 55, SL5

Metropolitan Boston Housing Partnership
125 Lincoln Street, 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02111-2503
T: Chinatown (Orange Line – several blocks’ walk); Buses 7,11

Emergency Shelter Commission
1 City Hall Square, Room 716
Boston, MA 02201-2025
T: Government Center (Blue & Green Lines)

HomeStart, Inc.
105 Chauncy Street
Boston, MA 02111
T: Downtown Crossing (Red & Orange Lines), Boylston (Green Line), Buses 7, 11, 15, 43, 55, SL4, SL5

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