Charging Discrimination, Group Pickets Pittsfield; Management Denies Claim
Pittsfield Village apartments are being picketed by a group protesting what it calls discriminatory rental practices.
Members of the Ann Arbor Area Fair Housing Association began the picketing yesterday. They announced they would continue "until a change in policy is effected" by the village arrangement.
The association claims tests have shown that "qualified" Negroes are not allowed to rent apartments at Pittsfield Village. It says the agent for the housing units, Reaume and Dodds, Inc., of Detroit, has refused to discuss the matte with them.
Leonard P. Reaume, president of Pittsfield Village, Inc., and chairman of the board of Reaume and Dodds, today denied both charges. He said that his firm has "no racial policy" and that new rentals now are not possible because there are no vacancies in the village.
"We select tenants on an individual family basis," Reaume said. "We are very selective, and that contributes to the friendly atmosphere of the village.
"This whole demonstration is because of certain applicants whom we did not accept. We won't be pressured into accepting people who don't meet our requirements.
"The management has a duty to its tenants. We want them to be able to enjoy their homes, and we try to protect them from people who might disturb that enjoyment."
Reaume said Pittsfield Village is operated from the premises, and that the office staff there handles all applications.
He said a delegation from the association called at his Detroit office without appointment while he was out.
Reuame said the same standards are applied to all persons who seek to rent units in the village.