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New York State Human Rights Law

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290. Purposes of Article
291. Equality of Opportunity a Civil Right
292. Definitions
293. Division of Human Rights
294. General Policies of Division
295. General Powers and Duties of Division
296. Unlawful Discriminatory Practices
296-a. Unlawful discriminatory practices in relation to credit
296-b. Unlawful discriminatory practices relating to domestic workers
297. Procedure
298. Judicial review and enforcement
298-a. Application of article to certain acts committed outside the State of New York
299. Penal Provision
300. Construction
301. Separability

 

§ 290. Purposes of article.  

   1. This article shall be known as the "Human Rights Law". 

    2. It shall be deemed an exercise of the police power of the state for the protection of the public welfare, health and peace of the people of this state, and in fulfillment of the provisions of the constitution of this state concerning civil rights. 

    3. The legislature hereby finds and declares that the state has the responsibility to act to assure that every individual within this state is afforded an equal opportunity to enjoy a full and productive life and that the failure to provide such equal opportunity, whether because of discrimination, prejudice, intolerance or inadequate education, training, housing or health care not only threatens the rights and proper privileges of its inhabitants but menaces the institutions and foundation of a free democratic state and threatens the peace, order, health, safety and general welfare of the state and its inhabitants. A division in the executive department is hereby created to encourage programs designed to insure that every individual shall have an equal opportunity to participate fully in the economic, cultural and intellectual life of the state; to encourage and promote the development and execution by all persons within the state of such state programs; to eliminate and prevent discrimination in employment, in places of public accommodation, resort or amusement, in educational institutions, in public services, in housing accommodations, in commercial space and in credit transactions and to take other actions against discrimination as herein provided; and the division established hereunder is hereby given general jurisdiction and power for such purposes.

  

§ 291. Equality of opportunity a civil right.

    1. The opportunity to obtain employment without discrimination because of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, marital status, or disability, is hereby recognized as and declared to be a civil right.

    2. The opportunity to obtain education, the use of places of public accommodation and the ownership, use and occupancy of housing accommodations and commercial space without discrimination because of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, marital status, or disability, as specified in section two hundred ninety six of this article, is hereby recognized as and declared to be a civil right.

    3. The opportunity to obtain medical treatment of an infant prematurely born alive in the course of an abortion shall be the same as the rights of an infant born spontaneously.

  

§ 292. Definitions.

    When used in this article:

    1. The term "person" includes one or more individuals, partnerships, associations, corporations, legal representatives, trustees, trustees in bankruptcy, or receivers.

    2. The term "employment agency" includes any person undertaking to procure employees or opportunities to work.

    3. The term "labor organization" includes any organization which exists and is constituted for the purpose, in whole or in part, of collective bargaining or of dealing with employers concerning grievances, terms or conditions of employment, or of other mutual aid or protection in connection with employment.

    4. The term "unlawful discriminatory practice" includes only those practices specified in sections two hundred ninety-six and two hundred ninety-six-a of this article.

    5. The term "employer" does not include any employer with fewer than four persons in his or her employ except as set forth in section two hundred ninety-six-b of this title.

    6. The term "employee" in this article does not include any individual employed by his or her parents, spouse or child, or in the domestic service of any person except as set forth in section two hundred ninety-six-b of this title.

    7. The term "commissioner", unless a different meaning clearly appears from the context, means the state commissioner of human rights; and the term "division" means the state division of human rights created by this article.

    8. The term "national origin" shall, for the purposes of this article, include "ancestry."

    9. The term "place of public accommodation, resort or amusement" shall include, except as hereinafter specified, all places included in the meaning of such terms as: inns, taverns, road houses, hotels, motels, whether conducted for the entertainment of transient guests or for the accommodation of those seeking health, recreation or rest, or restaurants, or eating houses, or any place where food is sold for consumption on the premises; buffets, saloons, barrooms, or any store, park or enclosure where spirituous or malt liquors are sold; ice cream parlors, confectionaries, soda fountains, and all stores where ice cream, ice and fruit preparations or their derivatives, or where beverages of any kind are retailed for consumption on the premises; wholesale and retail stores and establishments dealing with goods or services of any kind, dispensaries, clinics, hospitals, bath-houses, swimming pools, laundries and all other cleaning establishments, barber shops, beauty parlors, theatres, motion picture houses, airdromes, roof gardens, music halls, race courses, skating rinks, amusement and recreation parks, trailer camps, resort camps, fairs, bowling alleys, golf courses, gymnasiums, shooting galleries, billiard and pool parlors; garages, all public conveyances operated on land or water or in the air, as well as the stations and terminals thereof; travel or tour advisory services, agencies or bureaus; public halls and public elevators of buildings and structures occupied by two or more tenants, or by the owner and one or more tenants. Such term shall not include public libraries, kindergartens, primary and secondary schools, high schools, academies, colleges and universities, extension courses, and all educational institutions under the supervision of the regents of the state of New York; any such public library, kindergarten, primary and secondary school, academy, college, university, professional school, extension course or other education facility, supported in whole or in part by public funds or by contributions solicited from the general public; or any institution, club or place of accommodation which proves that it is in its nature distinctly private. In no event shall an institution, club or place of accommodation be considered in its nature distinctly private if it has more than one hundred members, provides regular meal service and regularly receives payment for dues, fees, use of space, facilities, services, meals or beverages directly or indirectly from or on behalf of a nonmember for the furtherance of trade or business. An institution, club, or place of accommodation which is not deemed distinctly private pursuant to this subdivision may nevertheless apply such selective criteria as it chooses in the use of its facilities, in evaluating applicants for membership and in the conduct of its activities, so long as such selective criteria do not constitute discriminatory practices under this article or any other provision of law. For the purposes of this section, a corporation incorporated under the benevolent orders law or described in the benevolent orders law but formed under any other law of this state or a religious corporation incorporated under the education law or the religious corporations law shall be deemed to be in its nature distinctly private. No institution, club, organization or place of accommodation which sponsors or conducts any amateur athletic contest or sparring exhibition and advertises or bills such contest or exhibition as a New York state championship contest or uses the words "New York state" in its announcements shall be deemed a private exhibition within the meaning of this section.

    10. The term "housing accommodation" includes any building, structure, or portion thereof which is used or occupied or is intended, arranged or designed to be used or occupied, as the home, residence or sleeping place of one or more human beings.

    11. The term "publicly-assisted housing accommodations" shall include all housing accommodations within the state of New York in

    (a) public housing,

    (b) housing operated by housing companies under the supervision of the commissioner of housing,

    (c) housing constructed after July first, nineteen hundred fifty, within the state of New York

   (1) which is exempt in whole or in part from taxes levied by the state or any of its political subdivisions,

   (2) which is constructed on land sold below cost by the state or any of its political subdivisions or any agency thereof, pursuant to the federal housing act of nineteen hundred forty-nine,

   (3) which is constructed in whole or in part on property acquired or assembled by the state or any of its political subdivisions or any agency thereof through the power of condemnation or otherwise for the purpose of such construction, or

   (4) for the acquisition, construction, repair or maintenance of which the state or any of its political subdivisions or any agency thereof supplies funds or other financial assistance,

    (d) housing which is located in a multiple dwelling, the acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, repair or maintenance of which is, after July first, nineteen hundred fifty-five, financed in whole or in part by a loan, whether or not secured by a mortgage, the repayment of which is guaranteed or insured by the federal government or any agency thereof, or the state or any of its political subdivisions or any agency thereof, provided that such a housing accommodation shall be deemed to be publicly assisted only during the life of such loan and such guaranty or insurance; and

    (e) housing which is offered for sale by a person who owns or otherwise controls the sale of ten or more housing accommodations located on land that is contiguous (exclusive of public streets), if (1) the acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, repair or maintenance of such housing accommodations is, after July first, nineteen hundred fifty-five, financed in whole or in part by a loan, whether or not secured by a mortgage, the repayment of which is guaranteed or insured by the federal government or any agency thereof, or the state or any of its political subdivisions or any agency thereof, provided that such a housing accommodation shall be deemed to be publicly assisted only during the life of such loan and guaranty or insurance, or (2) a commitment, issued by a government agency after July first, nineteen hundred fifty-five, is outstanding that acquisition of such housing accommodations may be financed in whole or in part by a loan, whether or not secured by a mortgage, the repayment of which is guaranteed or insured by the federal government or any agency thereof, or the state or any of its political subdivisions or any agency thereof.

    12. The term "multiple dwelling", as herein used, means a dwelling which is occupied, as a rule, for permanent residence purposes and which is either sold, rented, leased, let or hired out, to be occupied as the residence or home of three or more families living independently of each other. A "multiple dwelling" shall not be deemed to include a hospital, convent, monastery, asylum or public institution, or a fireproof building used wholly for commercial purposes except for not more than one janitor's apartment and not more than one penthouse occupied by not more than two families. The term "family," as used herein, means either a person occupying a dwelling and maintaining a household, with not more than four boarders, roomers or lodgers, or two or more persons occupying a dwelling, living together and maintaining a common household, with not more than four boarders, roomers or lodgers. A "boarder," "roomer" or "lodger" residing with a family means a person living within the household who pays a consideration for such residence and does not occupy such space within the household as an incident of employment therein. Within the context of this definition, the terms "multiple dwelling" and "multi-family dwelling" are interchangeable.

    13. The term "commercial space" means any space in a building, structure, or portion thereof which is used or occupied or is intended, arranged or designed to be used or occupied for the manufacture, sale, resale, processing, reprocessing, displaying, storing, handling, garaging or distribution of personal property; and any space which is used or occupied, or is intended, arranged or designed to be used or occupied as a separate business or professional unit or office in any building, structure or portion thereof.

    14. The term "real estate broker" means any person, firm or corporation who, for another and for a fee, commission or other valuable consideration, lists for sale, sells, at auction or otherwise, exchanges, buys or rents, or offers or attempts to negotiate a sale, at auction or otherwise, exchange, purchase or rental of an estate or interest in real estate, or collects or offers or attempts to collect rent for the use of real estate, or negotiates, or offers or attempts to negotiate, a loan secured or to be secured by a mortgage or other incumbrance upon or transfer of real estate. In the sale of lots pursuant to the provisions of article nine-a of the real property law, the term "real estate broker" shall also include any person, partnership, association or corporation employed by or on behalf of the owner or owners of lots or other parcels of real estate, at a stated salary, or upon a commission, or upon a salary and commission, or otherwise, to sell such real estate, or any parts thereof, in lots or other parcels, and who shall sell or exchange, or offer or attempt or agree to negotiate the sale or exchange, of any such lot or parcel of real estate.

    15. The term "real estate salesperson" means a person employed by a licensed real estate broker to list for sale, sell or offer for sale, at auction or otherwise, to buy or offer to buy or to negotiate the purchase or sale or exchange of real estate, or to negotiate a loan on real estate, or to lease or rent or offer to lease, rent or place for rent any real estate, or who collects or offers or attempts to collect rent for the use of real estate for or in behalf of such real estate broker.

    16. The term "necessary party" means any person who has such an interest in the subject matter of a proceeding under this article, or whose rights are so involved, that no complete and effective disposition can be made without his or her participation in the proceeding.

    17. The term "parties to the proceeding" means the complainant, respondent, necessary parties and persons permitted to intervene as parties in a proceeding with respect to a complaint filed under this article.

    18. The term "hearing examiner" means an employee of the division who shall be assigned for stated periods to no other work than the conduct of hearings under this article;

    19. The term "discrimination" shall include segregation and separation.

    20. The term "credit", when used in this article means the right conferred upon a person by a creditor to incur debt and defer its payment, whether or not any interest or finance charge is made for the exercise of this right.

    21. The term "disability" means (a) a physical, mental or medical impairment resulting from anatomical, physiological, genetic or neurological conditions which prevents the exercise of a normal bodily function or is demonstrable by medically accepted clinical or laboratory diagnostic techniques or (b) a record of such an impairment or (c) a condition regarded by others as such an impairment, provided, however, that in all provisions of this article dealing with employment, the term shall be limited to disabilities which, upon the provision of reasonable accommodations, do not prevent the complainant from performing in a reasonable manner the activities involved in the job or occupation sought or held.

    21-a. "Predisposing genetic characteristic" shall mean any inherited gene or chromosome, or alteration thereof, and determined by a genetic test or inferred from information derived from an individual or family member that is scientifically or medically believed to predispose an individual or the offspring of that individual to a disease or disability, or to be associated with a statistically significant increased risk of development of a physical or mental disease or disability.

    21-b. "Genetic test" shall mean a test for determining the presence or absence of an inherited genetic characteristic in an individual, including tests of nucleic acids such as DNA, RNA and mitochondrial DNA, chromosomes or proteins in order to identify a predisposing genetic characteristic.

    21-e. The term "reasonable accommodation" means actions taken which permit an employee, prospective employee or member with a disability to perform in a reasonable manner the activities involved in the job or occupation sought or held and include, but are not limited to, provision of an accessible worksite, acquisition or modification of equipment, support services for persons with impaired hearing or vision, job restructuring and modified work schedules; provided, however, that such actions do not impose an undue hardship on the business, program or enterprise of the entity from which action is requested.

    22. The term "creditor", when used in this article, means any person or financial institution which does business in this state and which extends credit or arranges for the extension of credit by others. The term creditor includes, but is not limited to, banks and trust companies, private bankers, foreign banking corporations and national banks, savings banks, licensed lenders, savings and loan associations, credit unions, sales finance companies, insurance premium finance agencies, insurers, credit card issuers, mortgage brokers, mortgage companies, mortgage insurance corporations, wholesale and retail merchants and factors.

    23. The term "credit reporting bureau", when used in this article, means any person doing business in this state who regularly makes credit reports, as such term is defined by subdivision e of section three hundred seventy-one of the general business law.

    24. The term "regulated creditor", when used in this article, means any creditor, as herein defined, which has received its charter, license, or organization certificate, as the case may be, from the banking department or which is otherwise subject to the supervision of the banking department.

    25. The term "superintendent", when used in this article, means the head of the banking department appointed pursuant to section twelve of the banking law.

    26. The term "familial status", when used in this article, means:

    (a) any person who is pregnant or has a child or is in the process of securing legal custody of any individual who has not attained the age of eighteen years, or

    (b) one or more individuals (who have not attained the age of eighteen years) being domiciled with:

   (1) a parent or another person having legal custody of such individual or individuals, or

   (2) the designee of such parent.

    27. The term "sexual orientation" means heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality or asexuality, whether actual or perceived. However, nothing contained herein shall be construed to protect conduct otherwise proscribed by law.

    28. The term "military status" when used in this article means a person's participation in the military service of the United States or the military service of the state, including but not limited to, the armed forces of the United States, the army national guard, the air national guard, the New York naval militia, the New York guard, and such additional forces as may be created by the federal or state government as authorized by law.

    29. The term "reserve armed forces", when used in this article, means service other than permanent, full-time service in the military forces of the United States including but not limited to service in the United States Army Reserve, the United States Naval Reserve, the United States Marine Corps Reserve, the United States Air Force Reserve, or the United States Coast Guard Reserve.

    30. The term "organized militia of the state", when used in this article, means service other than permanent, full-time service in the military forces of the state of New York including but not limited to the New York army national guard, the New York air national guard, the New York naval militia and the New York guard.

    31. The term "guide dog" means any dog that is trained to aid a person who is blind by a recognized guide dog training center or professional guide dog trainer, and is actually used for such purpose.

    32. The term "hearing dog" means any dog that is trained to aid a person with a hearing impairment by a recognized hearing dog training center or professional hearing dog trainer, and is actually used for such purpose.

    33. The term "service dog" means any dog that is trained to work or perform specific tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability by a recognized service dog training center or professional service dog trainer, and is actually used for such purpose.

    34. The term "domestic violence victim", when used in this article, means an individual who is a victim of an act which would constitute a family offense pursuant to subdivision one of section eight hundred twelve of the family court act.

 

 § 293. Division of human rights.

    1. There is hereby created in the executive department a division of human rights hereinafter in this article called the division. The head of such division shall be a commissioner hereinafter in this article called the commissioner, who shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate and shall hold office at the pleasure of the governor. The commissioner shall be entitled to his or her expenses actually and necessarily incurred by him or her in the performance of his or her duties.

    2. The commissioner may establish, consolidate, reorganize or abolish such bureaus and other organizational units within the division as he or she determines to be necessary for efficient operation.

  

§ 294. General policies of division.

    The division shall formulate policies to effectuate the purposes of this article and may make recommendations to agencies and officers of the state or local subdivisions of government in aid of such policies and purposes.

  

§ 295. General powers and duties of division.

    The division, by and through the commissioner or his or her duly authorized officer or employee, shall have the following  functions, powers and duties:

    1. To establish and maintain its principal office, and such other offices within the state as it may deem necessary.

    2. To function at any place within the state.

    3. To appoint such officers, attorneys, clerks and other employees and agents, consultants and special committees as it may deem necessary, fix their compensation within the limitations provided by law, and prescribe their duties.

    4. To obtain upon request and utilize the services of all governmental departments and agencies.

    5. To adopt, promulgate, amend and rescind suitable rules and regulations to carry out the provisions of this article, and the policies and practices of the division in connection therewith.

    6. (a) To receive, investigate and pass upon complaints alleging violations of this article.

    (b) Upon its own motion, to test and investigate and to make, sign and file complaints alleging violations of this article and to initiate investigations and studies to carry out the purposes of this article.

    7. To hold hearings, to provide where appropriate for cross interrogatories, subpoena witnesses, impel their attendance, administer oaths, take the testimony of any person under oath, and in connection therewith, to require the production for examination of any books or papers relating to any matter under investigation or in question before the division. The division may make rules as to the issuance of subpoenas which may be issued by the division at any stage of any investigation or proceeding before it. In any such investigation or hearing, the commissioner, or an officer duly designated by the commissioner to conduct such investigation or hearing, may confer immunity in accordance with the provisions of section 50.20 of the criminal procedure law.

    8. To create such advisory councils, local, regional or state wide, as in its judgment will aid in effectuating the purposes of this article and of section eleven of article one of the constitution of this state, and the division may empower them to study the problems of discrimination in all or specific fields of human relationships or in specific instances of discrimination because of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability or marital status and make recommendations to the division for the development of policies and procedures in general and in specific instances. The advisory councils also shall disseminate information about the division's activities to organizations and individuals in their localities. Such advisory councils shall be composed of representative citizens, serving without pay, but with reimbursement for actual and necessary traveling expenses; and the division may make provision for technical and clerical assistance to such councils and for the expenses of such assistance.

    9. To develop human rights plans and policies for the state and assist in their execution and to make investigations and studies appropriate to effectuate this article and to issue such publications and such results of investigations and research as in its judgment will tend to inform persons of the rights assured and remedies provided under this article, to promote good will and minimize or eliminate discrimination because of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability or marital status.

    10. To render each year to the governor and to the legislature a full written report of all its activities and of its recommendations.

    11. To inquire into incidents of and conditions which may lead to tension and conflict among racial, religious and nationality groups and to take such action within the authority granted by law to the division, as may be designed to alleviate such conditions, tension and conflict.

    12. To furnish any person with such technical assistance as the division deems appropriate to further compliance with the purposes or provisions of this article.

    13. To promote the creation of human rights agencies by counties, cities, villages or towns in circumstances the division deems appropriate.

    14. To accept, with the approval of the governor, as agent of the state, any grant, including federal grants, or any gift for any of the purposes of this article. Any moneys so received may be expended by the division to effectuate any purpose of this article, subject to the same limitations as to approval of expenditures and audit as are prescribed for state moneys appropriated for the purposes of this article.

    15. To adopt an official seal.

    16. To have concurrent jurisdiction with the New York city commission on human rights over the administration and enforcement of title C of chapter one of the administrative code of the city of New York.

  

§ 296. Unlawful discriminatory practices.

    1. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice:

    (a) For an employer or licensing agency, because of an individual's age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability, predisposing genetic characteristics, marital status, or domestic violence victim status, to refuse to hire or employ or to bar or to discharge from employment such individual or to discriminate against such individual in compensation or in terms, conditions or privileges of employment.

    (b) For an employment agency to discriminate against any individual because of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability, predisposing genetic characteristics, or marital status, in receiving, classifying, disposing or otherwise acting upon applications for its services or in referring an applicant or applicants to an employer or employers.

    (c) For a labor organization, because of the age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability, predisposing genetic characteristics, or marital status of any individual, to exclude or to expel from its membership such individual or to discriminate in any way against any of its members or against any employer or any individual employed by an employer.

    (d) For any employer or employment agency to print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for employment or to make any inquiry in connection with prospective employment, which expresses directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification or discrimination as to age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability, predisposing genetic characteristics, or marital status, or any intent to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination, unless based upon a bona fide occupational qualification; provided, however, that neither this paragraph nor any provision of this chapter or other law shall be construed to prohibit the department of civil service or the department of personnel of any city containing more than one county from requesting information from applicants for civil service examinations concerning any of the aforementioned characteristics, other than sexual orientation, for the purpose of conducting studies to identify and resolve possible problems in recruitment and testing of members of minority groups to insure the fairest possible and equal opportunities for employment in the civil service for all persons, regardless of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability, predisposing genetic characteristics, or marital status.

    (e) For any employer, labor organization or employment agency to discharge, expel or otherwise discriminate against any person because he or she has opposed any practices forbidden under this article or because he or she has filed a complaint, testified or assisted in any proceeding under this article.

    (f) Nothing in this subdivision shall affect any restrictions upon the activities of persons licensed by the state liquor authority with respect to persons under twenty-one years of age.

    (g) For an employer to compel an employee who is pregnant to take a leave of absence, unless the employee is prevented by such pregnancy from performing the activities involved in the job or occupation in a reasonable manner.

    1-a. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for an employer, labor organization, employment agency or any joint labor-management committee controlling apprentice training programs:

    (a) To select persons for an apprentice training program registered with the state of New York on any basis other than their qualifications, as determined by objective criteria which permit review;

    (b) To deny to or withhold from any person because of race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, or marital status, the right to be admitted to or participate in a guidance program, an apprenticeship training program, on-the-job training program, executive training program, or other occupational training or retraining program;

    (c) To discriminate against any person in his or her pursuit of such programs or to discriminate against such a person in the terms, conditions or privileges of such programs because of race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability or marital status;

    (d) To print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for such programs or to make any inquiry in connection with such program which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification or discrimination as to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability or marital status, or any intention to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination, unless based on a bona fide occupational qualification.

    2. (a) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any person, being the owner, lessee, proprietor, manager, superintendent, agent or employee of any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement, because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, or disability or marital status of any person, directly or indirectly, to refuse, withhold from or deny to such person any of the accommodations, advantages, facilities or privileges thereof, including the extension of credit, or, directly or indirectly, to publish, circulate, issue, display, post or mail any written or printed communication, notice or advertisement, to the effect that any of the accommodations, advantages, facilities and privileges of any such place shall be refused, withheld from or denied to any person on account of race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, or disability or marital status, or that the patronage or custom thereat of any person of or purporting to be of any particular race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex or marital status, or having a disability is unwelcome, objectionable or not acceptable, desired or solicited.

    (b) Nothing in this subdivision shall be construed to prevent the barring of any person, because of the sex of such person, from places of public accommodation, resort or amusement if the division grants an exemption based on bona fide considerations of public policy; nor shall this subdivision apply to the rental of rooms in a housing accommodation which restricts such rental to individuals of one sex.

    (c) For the purposes of paragraph (a) of this subdivision, "discriminatory practice" includes:

 (i) a refusal to make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures, when such modifications are necessary to afford facilities, privileges, advantages or accommodations to individuals with disabilities, unless such person can demonstrate that making such modifications would fundamentally alter the nature of such facilities, privileges, advantages or accommodations;

(ii) a refusal to take such steps as may be necessary to ensure that no individual with a disability is excluded or denied services because of the absence of auxiliary aids and services, unless such person can demonstrate that taking such steps would fundamentally alter the nature of the facility, privilege, advantage or accommodation being offered or would result in an undue burden;

(iii) a refusal to remove architectural barriers, and communication barriers that are structural in nature, in existing facilities, and transportation barriers in existing vehicles and rail passenger cars used by an establishment for transporting individuals (not including barriers that can only be removed through the retrofitting of vehicles or rail passenger cars by the installation of a hydraulic or other lift), where such removal is readily achievable; and

(iv) where such person can demonstrate that the removal of a barrier under subparagraph (iii) of this paragraph is not readily achievable, a failure to make such facilities, privileges, advantages or accommodations available through alternative methods if such methods are readily achievable.

    (d) For the purposes of this subdivision:

 (i) "Readily achievable" means easily accomplishable and able to be carried out without much difficulty or expense. In determining whether an action is readily achievable, factors to be considered include:

(A) the nature and cost of the action needed under this subdivision;

(B) the overall financial resources of the facility or facilities involved in the action; the number of persons employed at such facility; the effect on expenses and resources or the impact otherwise of such action upon the operation of the facility;

(C) the overall financial resources of the place of public accommodation, resort or amusement; the overall size of the business of such a place with respect to the number of its employees; the number, type and location of its facilities; and

(D) the type of operation or operations of the place of public accommodation, resort or amusement, including the composition, structure and functions of the workforce of such place; the geographic separateness, administrative or fiscal relationship of the facility or facilities in question to such place.

(ii) "Auxiliary aids and services" include:

(A) qualified interpreters or other effective methods of making aurally delivered materials available to individuals with hearing impairments;

(B) qualified readers, taped texts or other effective methods of making visually delivered materials available to individuals with visual impairments;

(C) acquisition or modification of equipment or devices; and

(D) other similar services and actions.

(iii) "Undue burden" means significant difficulty or expense. In determining whether an action would result in an undue burden, factors to be considered shall include:

(A) The nature and cost of the action needed under this article;

(B) The overall financial resources of the site or sites involved in the action; the number of persons employed at the site; the effect on expenses and resources; legitimate safety requirements that are necessary for safe operation, including crime prevention measures; or the impact otherwise of the action upon the operation of the site;

(C) The geographic separateness, and the administrative or fiscal relationship of the site or sites in question to any parent corporation or entity;

(D) If applicable, the overall financial resources of any parent corporation or entity; the overall size of the parent corporation or entity with respect to the number of its employees; the number, type, and location of its facilities; and

(E) If applicable, the type of operation or operations of any parent corporation or entity, including the composition, structure, and functions of the workforce of the parent corporation or entity.

    (e) Paragraphs (c) and (d) of this subdivision do not apply to any air carrier, the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, or public transportation facilities, vehicles or services owned, leased or operated by the state, a county, city, town or village, or any agency thereof, or by any public benefit corporation or authority.

    2-a. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for the owner, lessee, sub-lessee, assignee, or managing agent of publicly-assisted housing accommodations or other person having the right of ownership or possession of or the right to rent or lease such accommodations:

    (a) To refuse to sell, rent or lease or otherwise to deny to or withhold from any person or group of persons such housing accommodations because of the race, creed, color, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, marital status, or familial status of such person or persons, or to represent that any housing accommodation or land is not available for inspection, sale, rental or lease when in fact it is so available.

    (b) To discriminate against any person because of his or her race, creed, color, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, marital status, or familial status in the terms, conditions or privileges of any publicly-assisted housing accommodations or in the furnishing of facilities or services in connection therewith.

    (c) To cause to be made any written or oral inquiry or record concerning the race, creed, color, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, membership in the reserve armed forces of the United States or in the organized militia of the state, age, sex, marital status, or familial status of a person seeking to rent or lease any publicly-assisted housing accommodation; provided, however, that nothing in this subdivision shall prohibit a member of the reserve armed forces of the United States or in the organized militia of the state from voluntarily disclosing such membership.

    (c-1) To print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for the purchase, rental or lease of such housing accommodation or to make any record or inquiry in connection with the prospective purchase, rental or lease of such a housing accommodation which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification or discrimination as to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status, or any intent to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination.

    (d)(1) To refuse to permit, at the expense of the person with a disability, reasonable modifications of existing premises occupied or to be occupied by the said person, if the modifications may be necessary to afford the said person full enjoyment of the premises, in conformity with the provisions of the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code, except that, in the case of a rental, the landlord may, where it is reasonable to do so, condition permission for a modification on the renter's agreeing to restore the interior of the premises to the condition that existed before the modification, reasonable wear and tear excepted.

   (2) To refuse to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, or services, when such accommodations may be necessary to afford a person with a disability equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling, including reasonable modification to common use portions of the dwelling, or

   (3) In connection with the design and construction of covered multi-family dwellings for first occupancy after March thirteenth, nineteen hundred ninety-one, a failure to design and construct dwellings in accordance with the accessibility requirements of the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code, to provide that:

(i) The public use and common use portions of the dwellings are readily accessible to and usable by disabled persons with disabilities;

(ii) All the doors are designed in accordance with the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code to allow passage into and within all premises and are sufficiently wide to allow passage by persons in wheelchairs; and

(iii) All premises within covered multi-family dwelling units contain an accessible route into and through the dwelling; light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and other environmental controls are in accessible locations; there are reinforcements in the bathroom walls to allow later installation of grab bars; and there are usable kitchens and bathrooms such that an individual in a wheelchair can maneuver about the space, in conformity with the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code.

    (e) Nothing in this subdivision shall restrict the consideration of age in the rental of publicly-assisted housing accommodations if the division grants an exemption based on bona fide considerations of public policy for the purpose of providing for the special needs of a particular age group without the intent of prejudicing other age groups.

   (f) Nothing in this subdivision shall be deemed to restrict the rental of rooms in school or college dormitories to individuals of the same sex.

   3. (a) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for an employer, licensing agency, employment agency or labor organization to refuse to provide reasonable accommodations to the known disabilities of an employee, prospective employee or member in connection with a job or occupation sought or held or participation in a training program.

   (b) Nothing contained in this subdivision shall be construed to require provision of accommodations which can be demonstrated to impose an undue hardship on the operation of an employer's, licensing agency's, employment agency's or labor organization's business, program or enterprise. In making such a demonstration with regard to undue hardship the factors to be considered include:

(i) The overall size of the business, program or enterprise with respect to the number of employees, number and type of facilities, and size of budget;

(ii) The type of operation which the business, program or enterprise is engaged in, including the composition and structure of the workforce; and

(iii) The nature and cost of the accommodation needed.

   3-a. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice: (a) For an employer or licensing agency to refuse to hire or employ or license or to bar or to terminate from employment an individual eighteen years of age or older, or to discriminate against such individual in promotion, compensation or in terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual's age.

   (b) For any employer, licensing agency or employment agency to print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for employment or to make any inquiry in connection with prospective employment, which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification or discrimination on account of age respecting individuals eighteen years of age or older, or any intent to make any such limitation, specification, or discrimination.

   (c) For any employer, licensing agency or employment agency to discharge or otherwise discriminate against any person because he or she has opposed any practices forbidden under this article or because he or she has filed a complaint, testified or assisted in any proceeding under this article.

   (d) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no employee shall be subject to termination or retirement from employment on the basis of age, except where age is a bona fide occupational qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of a particular business, where the differentiation is based on reasonable factors other than age, or as otherwise specified in paragraphs (e) and (f) of this subdivision or in article fourteen-A of the retirement and social security law.

   (e) Nothing contained in this subdivision or in subdivision one of this section shall be construed to prevent the compulsory retirement of any employee who has attained sixty-five years of age, and who, for a two-year period immediately before retirement, is employed in a bona fide executive or a high policymaking position, if such employee is entitled to an immediate nonforfeitable annual retirement benefit from a pension, profit-sharing, savings, or deferred compensation plan, or any combination of such plans, of the employer of such employee, which equals, in the aggregate, at least forty-four thousand dollars; provided that for the purposes of this paragraph only, the term "employer" includes any employer as otherwise defined in this article but does not include (i) the state of New York, (ii) a county, city, town, village or any other political subdivision or civil division of the state, (iii) a school district or any other governmental entity operating a public school, college or university, (iv) a public improvement or special district, (v) a public authority, commission or public benefit corporation, or (vi) any other public corporation, agency, instrumentality or unit of government which exercises governmental power under the laws of the state. In applying the retirement benefit test of this paragraph, if any such retirement benefit is in a form other than a straight life annuity with no ancillary benefits, or if employees contribute to any such plan or make rollover contributions, such benefit shall be adjusted in accordance with rules and regulations promulgated by the division, after an opportunity for public hearing, so that the benefit is the equivalent of a straight life annuity with no ancillary benefits under a plan to which employees do not contribute and under which no rollover contributions are made.

   (f) Nothing contained in this subdivision, in subdivision one of this section or in article fourteen-A of the retirement and social security law shall be construed to prevent the compulsory retirement of any employee who has attained seventy years of age and is serving under a contract for unlimited tenure, or a similar arrangement providing for unlimited tenure, at a nonpublic institution of higher education. For purposes of such subdivisions or article, the term "institution of higher education" means an educational institution which

(i) admits as regular students only persons having a certificate of graduation from a school providing secondary education, or the recognized equivalent of such a certificate,

(ii) is lawfully authorized to provide a program of education beyond secondary education, and

(iii) provides an educational program for which it awards a bachelor's degree or provides not less than a two-year program which is acceptable for full credit toward such a degree.

   (g) In the event of a conflict between the provisions of this subdivision and the provisions of article fourteen-A of the retirement and social security law, the provisions of article fourteen-A of such law shall be controlling. But nothing contained in this subdivision, in subdivision one of this section or in article fourteen-A of the retirement and social security law shall be construed to prevent the termination of the employment of any person who, even upon the provision of reasonable accommodations, is physically unable to perform his or her duties or to affect the retirement policy or system of any employer where such policy or system is not merely a subterfuge to evade the purposes of said subdivisions or said article; nor shall anything in such subdivisions or such article be deemed to preclude the varying of insurance coverages according to an employee's age. The provisions of this subdivision shall not affect any restriction upon the activities of persons licensed by the state liquor authority with respect to persons under twenty-one years of age.

   3-b. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any real estate broker, real estate salesperson or employee or agent thereof or any other individual, corporation, partnership or organization for the purpose of inducing a real estate transaction from which any such person or any of its stockholders or members may benefit financially, to represent that a change has occurred or will or may occur in the composition with respect to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability, marital status, or familial status of the owners or occupants in the block, neighborhood or area in which the real property is located, and to represent, directly or indirectly, that this change will or may result in undesirable consequences in the block, neighborhood or area in which the real property is located, including but not limited to the lowering of property values, an increase in criminal or anti-social behavior, or a decline in the quality of schools or other facilities.

   4. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for an education corporation or association which holds itself out to the public to be non-sectarian and exempt from taxation pursuant to the provisions of article four of the real property tax law to deny the use of its facilities to any person otherwise qualified, or to permit the harassment of any student or applicant, by reason of his race, color, religion, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age or marital status, except that any such institution which establishes or maintains a policy of educating persons of one sex exclusively may admit students of only one sex.

   5. (a) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for the owner, lessee, sub-lessee, assignee, or managing agent of, or other person having the right to sell, rent or lease a housing accommodation, constructed or to be constructed, or any agent or employee thereof:

   (1) To refuse to sell, rent, lease or otherwise to deny to or withhold from any person or group of persons such a housing accommodation because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status of such person or persons, or to represent that any housing accommodation or land is not available for inspection, sale, rental or lease when in fact it is so available.

   (2) To discriminate against any person because of race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status in the terms, conditions or privileges of the sale, rental or lease of any such housing accommodation or in the furnishing of facilities or services in connection therewith.

   (3) To print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for the purchase, rental or lease of such housing accommodation or to make any record or inquiry in connection with the prospective purchase, rental or lease of such a housing accommodation which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification or discrimination as to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status, or any intent to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination.

   The provisions of this paragraph (a) shall not apply (1) to the rental of a housing accommodation in a building which contains housing accommodations for not more than two families living independently of each other, if the owner resides in one of such housing accommodations, (2) to the restriction of the rental of all rooms in a housing accommodation to individuals of the same sex or (3) to the rental of a room or rooms in a housing accommodation, if such rental is by the occupant of the housing accommodation or by the owner of the housing accommodation and the owner resides in such housing accommodation or (4) solely with respect to age and familial status to the restriction of the sale, rental or lease of housing accommodations exclusively to persons sixty-two years of age or older and the spouse of any such person, or for housing intended and operated for occupancy by at least one person fifty-five years of age or older per unit. In determining whether housing is intended and operated for occupancy by persons fifty-five years of age or older, Sec. 807(b) (2) (c) (42 U.S.C. 3607 (b) (2) (c)) of the federal Fair Housing Act of 1988, as amended, shall apply.

   (b) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for the owner, lessee, sub-lessee, or managing agent of, or other person having the right of ownership or possession of or the right to sell, rent or lease, land or commercial space:

   (1) To refuse to sell, rent, lease or otherwise deny to or withhold from any person or group of persons land or commercial space because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status of such person or persons, or to represent that any housing accommodation or land is not available for inspection, sale, rental or lease when in fact it is so available;

   (2) To discriminate against any person because of race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status in the terms, conditions or privileges of the sale, rental or lease of any such land or commercial space; or in the furnishing of facilities or services in connection therewith;

   (3) To print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for the purchase, rental or lease of such land or commercial space or to make any record or inquiry in connection with the prospective purchase, rental or lease of such land or commercial space which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification or discrimination as to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status; or any intent to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination.

   (4) With respect to age and familial status, the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the restriction of the sale, rental or lease of land or commercial space exclusively to persons fifty-five years of age or older and the spouse of any such person, or to the restriction of the sale, rental or lease of land to be used for the construction, or location of housing accommodations exclusively for persons sixty-two years of age or older, or intended and operated for occupancy by at least one person fifty-five years of age or older per unit. In determining whether housing is intended and operated for occupancy by persons fifty-five years of age or older, Sec. 807(b)(2)(c) (42 U.S.C. 3607(b)(2)(c)) of the federal Fair Housing Act of 1988, as amended, shall apply.

   (c) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any real estate broker, real estate salesperson or employee or agent thereof:

   (1) To refuse to sell, rent or lease any housing accommodation, land or commercial space to any person or group of persons or to refuse to negotiate for the sale, rental or lease, of any housing accommodation, land or commercial space to any person or group of persons because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status of such person or persons, or to represent that any housing accommodation, land or commercial space is not available for inspection, sale, rental or lease when in fact it is so available, or otherwise to deny or withhold any housing accommodation, land or commercial space or any facilities of any housing accommodation, land or commercial space from any person or group of persons because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status of such person or persons.

   (2) To print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for the purchase, rental or lease of any housing accommodation, land or commercial space or to make any record or inquiry in connection with the prospective purchase, rental or lease of any housing accommodation, land or commercial space which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification, or discrimination as to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, age, disability, marital status, or familial status; or any intent to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination.

   (3) With respect to age and familial status, the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the restriction of the sale, rental or lease of any land or commercial space exclusively to persons fifty-five years of age or older and the spouse of any such person, or to the restriction of the sale, rental or lease of any housing accommodation or land to be used for the construction or location of housing accommodations for persons sixty-two years of age or older, or intended and operated for occupancy by at least one person fifty-five years of age or older per unit. In determining whether housing is intended and operated for occupancy by persons fifty-five years of age or older, Sec. 807 (b)(2)(c) (42 U.S.C. 3607(b)(2)(c)) of the federal Fair Housing Act of 1988, as amended, shall apply.

   (d) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any real estate board, because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, disability, marital status, or familial status of any individual who is otherwise qualified for membership, to exclude or expel such individual from membership, or to discriminate against such individual in the terms, conditions and privileges of membership in such board.

   (e) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for the owner, proprietor or managing agent of, or other person having the right to provide care and services in, a private proprietary nursing home, convalescent home, or home for adults, or an intermediate care facility, as defined in section two of the social services law, heretofore constructed, or to be constructed, or any agent or employee thereof, to refuse to provide services and care in such home or facility to any individual or to discriminate against any individual in the terms, conditions, and privileges of such services and care solely because such individual is a blind person. For purposes of this paragraph, a "blind person" shall mean a person who is registered as a blind person with the commission for the visually handicapped and who meets the definition of a "blind person" pursuant to section three of chapter four hundred fifteen of the laws of nineteen hundred thirteen entitled "An act to establish a state commission for improving the condition of the blind of the state of New York, and making an appropriation therefor".

   (f) The provisions of this subdivision, as they relate to age, shall not apply to persons under the age of eighteen years.

   (g) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any person offering or providing housing accommodations, land or commercial space as described in paragraphs (a), (b), and (c) of this subdivision to make or cause to be made any written or oral inquiry or record concerning membership of any person in the state organized militia in relation to the purchase, rental or lease of such housing accommodation, land, or commercial space, provided, however, that nothing in this subdivision shall prohibit a member of the state organized militia from voluntarily disclosing such membership.

   6. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any person to aid, abet, incite, compel or coerce the doing of any of the acts forbidden under this article, or to attempt to do so.

   7. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any person engaged in any activity to which this section applies to retaliate or discriminate against any person because he or she has opposed any practices forbidden under this article or because he or she has filed a complaint, testified or assisted in any proceeding under this article.

   8. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any party to a conciliation agreement made pursuant to section two hundred ninety-seven of this article to violate the terms of such agreement.

   9. (a) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any fire department or fire company therein, through any member or members thereof, officers, board of fire commissioners or other body or office having power of appointment of volunteer firefighters, directly or indirectly, by ritualistic practice, constitutional or by-law prescription, by tacit agreement among its members, or otherwise, to deny to any individual membership in any volunteer fire department or fire company therein, or to expel or discriminate against any volunteer member of a fire department or fire company therein, because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex or marital status of such individual.

   (b) Upon a complaint to the division, as provided for under subdivision one of section two hundred ninety-seven of this article, and in the event the commissioner finds that an unlawful discriminatory practice has been engaged in, the board of fire commissioners or other body or office having power of appointment of volunteer firefighters shall be served with any order required, under subdivision four of section two hundred ninety-seven of this article, to be served on any or all respondents requiring such respondent or respondents to cease and desist from such unlawful discriminatory practice and to take affirmative action. Such board shall have the duty and power to appoint as a volunteer firefighter, notwithstanding any other statute or provision of law or by-law of any volunteer fire company, any individual whom the commissioner has determined to be the subject of an unlawful discriminatory practice under this subdivision. Unless such board has been found to have engaged in an unlawful discriminatory practice, service upon such board of such order shall not constitute such board or its members as a respondent nor constitute a finding of an unlawful discriminatory practice against such board or its members.

   10. (a) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any employer, or an employee or agent thereof, to impose upon a person as a condition of obtaining or retaining employment, including opportunities for promotion, advancement or transfers, any terms or conditions that would require such person to violate or forego a sincerely held practice of his or her religion, including but not limited to the observance of any particular day or days or any portion thereof as a sabbath or other holy day in accordance with the requirements of his or her religion, unless, after engaging in a bona fide effort, the employer demonstrates that it is unable to reasonably accommodate the employee's or prospective employee's sincerely held religious observance or practice without undue hardship on the conduct of the employer's business. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, an employee shall not be entitled to premium wages or premium benefits for work performed during hours to which such premium wages or premium benefits would ordinarily be applicable, if the employee is working during such hours only as an accommodation to his or her sincerely held religious requirements. Nothing in this paragraph or paragraph (b) of this subdivision shall alter or abridge the rights granted to an employee concerning the payment of wages or privileges of seniority accruing to that employee.

   (b) Except where it would cause an employer to incur an undue hardship, no person shall be required to remain at his or her place of employment during any day or days or portion thereof that, as a requirement of his or her religion, he or she observes as his or her sabbath or other holy day, including a reasonable time prior and subsequent thereto for travel between his or her place of employment and his or her home, provided however, that any such absence from work shall, wherever practicable in the reasonable judgment of the employer, be made up by an equivalent amount of time and work at some other mutually convenient time, or shall be charged against any leave with pay ordinarily granted, other than sick leave, provided further, however, that any such absence not so made up or charged, may be treated by the employer of such person as leave taken without pay.

   (c) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for an employer to refuse to permit an employee to utilize leave, as provided in paragraph (b) of this subdivision, solely because the leave will be used for absence from work to accommodate the employee's sincerely held religious observance or practice.

   (d) As used in this subdivision:

   (1) "undue hardship" shall mean an accommodation requiring significant expense or difficulty (including a significant interference with the safe or efficient operation of the workplace or a violation of a bona fide seniority system). Factors to be considered in determining whether the accommodation constitutes an undue economic hardship shall include, but not be limited to:

(i) the identifiable cost of the accommodation, including the costs of loss of productivity and of retaining or hiring employees or transferring employees from one facility to another, in relation to the size and operating cost of the employer;

(ii) the number of individuals who will need the particular accommodation to a sincerely held religious observance or practice; and

(iii) for an employer with multiple facilities, the degree to which the geographic separateness or administrative or fiscal relationship of the facilities will make the accommodation more difficult or expensive.

   Provided, however, an accommodation shall be considered to constitute an undue hardship if it will result in the inability of an employee to perform the essential functions of the position in which he or she is employed.

   (2) "premium wages" shall include overtime pay and compensatory time off, and additional remuneration for night, weekend or holiday work, or for standby or irregular duty.

   (3) "premium benefit" shall mean an employment benefit, such as seniority, group life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, sick leave, annual leave, or an educational or pension benefit that is greater than the employment benefit due the employee for an equivalent period of work performed during the regular work schedule of the employee.

   In the case of any employer other than the state, any of its political subdivisions or any school district, this subdivision shall not apply where the uniform application of terms and conditions of attendance to employees is essential to prevent undue economic hardship to the employer. In any proceeding in which the applicability of this subdivision is in issue, the burden of proof shall be upon the employer. If any question shall arise whether a particular position or class of positions is excepted from this subdivision by this paragraph, such question may be referred in writing by any party claimed to be aggrieved, in the case of any position of employment by the state or any of its political subdivisions, except by any school district, to the civil service commission, in the case of any position of employment by any school district, to the commissioner of education, who shall determine such question and in the case of any other employer, a party claiming to be aggrieved may file a complaint with the division pursuant to this article. Any such determination by the civil service commission shall be reviewable in the manner provided by article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules and any such determination by the commissioner of education shall be reviewable in the manner and to the same extent as other determinations of the commissioner under section three hundred ten of the education law.

   11. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to bar any religious or denominational institution or organization, or any organization operated for charitable or educational purposes, which is operated, supervised or controlled by or in connection with a religious organization, from limiting employment or sales or rental of housing accommodations or admission to or giving preference to persons of the same religion or denomination or from taking such action as is calculated by such organization to promote the religious principles for which it is established or maintained.

   12. Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivisions one, one-a and three-a of this section, it shall not be an unlawful discriminatory practice for an employer, employment agency, labor organization or joint labor-management committee to carry out a plan, approved by the division, to increase the employment of members of a minority group (as may be defined pursuant to the regulations of the division) which has a state-wide unemployment rate that is disproportionately high in comparison with the state-wide unemployment rate of the general population. Any plan approved under this subdivision shall be in writing and the division's approval thereof shall be for a limited period and may be rescinded at any time by the division.

   13. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice (i) for any person to boycott or blacklist, or to refuse to buy from, sell to or trade with, or otherwise discriminate against any person, because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, or disability of such person, or of such person's partners, members, stockholders, directors, officers, managers, superintendents, agents, employees, business associates, suppliers or customers, or (ii) for any person willfully to do any act or refrain from doing any act which enables any such person to take such action. This subdivision shall not apply to:

   (a) Boycotts connected with labor disputes; or

   (b) Boycotts to protest unlawful discriminatory practices.

   14. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any person engaged in any activity covered by this section to discriminate against a blind person, a hearing impaired person or a person with a disability on the basis of his or her use of a guide dog, hearing dog or service dog.

   15. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any person, agency, bureau, corporation or association, including the state and any political subdivision thereof, to deny any license or employment to any individual by reason of his or her having been convicted of one or more criminal offenses, or by reason of a finding of a lack of “good moral character” which is based upon his or her having been convicted of one or more criminal offenses, when such denial is in violation of the provisions of article twenty-three-A of the correction law. Further, there shall be a rebuttable presumption in favor of excluding from evidence the prior incarceration or conviction of any person, in a case alleging that the employer has been negligent in hiring or retaining an applicant or employee, or supervising a hiring manager, if after learning about an applicant or employee's past criminal conviction history, such employer has evaluated the factors set forth in section seven hundred fifty-two of the correction law, and made a reasonable, good faith determination that such factors militate in favor of hire or retention of that applicant or employee.

16. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice, unless specifically required or permitted by statute, for any person, agency, bureau, corporation or association, including the state and any political subdivision thereof, to make any inquiry about, whether in any form of application or otherwise, or to act upon adversely to the individual involved, any arrest or criminal accusation of such individual not then pending against that individual which was followed by a termination of that criminal action or proceeding in favor of such individual, as defined in subdivision two of section 160.50 of the criminal procedure law, or by a youthful offender adjudication, as defined in subdivision one of section 720.35 of the criminal procedure law, or by a conviction for a violation sealed pursuant to section 160.55 of the criminal procedure law or by a conviction which is sealed pursuant to section 160.58 of the criminal procedure law, in connection with the licensing, employment or providing of credit or insurance to such individual; provided, further, that no person shall be required to divulge information pertaining to any arrest or criminal accusation of such individual not then pending against that individual which was followed by a termination of that criminal action or proceeding in favor of such individual, as defined in subdivision two of section 160.50 of the criminal procedure law, or by a youthful offender adjudication, as defined in subdivision one of section 720.35 of the criminal procedure law, or by a conviction for a violation sealed pursuant to section 160.55 of the criminal procedure law, or by a conviction which is sealed pursuant to section 160.58 of the criminal procedure law. The provisions of this subdivision shall not apply to the licensing activities of governmental bodies in relation to the regulation of guns, firearms and other deadly weapons or in relation to an application for employment as a police officer or peace officer as those terms are defined in subdivisions thirty-three and thirty-four of section 1.20 of the criminal procedure law; provided further that the provisions of this subdivision shall not apply to an application for employment or membership in any law enforcement agency with respect to any arrest or criminal accusation which was followed by a youthful offender adjudication, as defined in subdivision one of section 720.35 of the criminal procedure law, or by a conviction for a violation sealed pursuant to section 160.55 of the criminal procedure law, or by a conviction which is sealed pursuant to section 160.58 of the criminal procedure law.   17. Nothing in this section shall prohibit the offer and acceptance of a discount to a person sixty-five years of age or older for housing accommodations.

   18. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for the owner, lessee, sub-lessee, assignee, or managing agent of, or other person having the right of ownership of or possession of or the right to rent or lease housing accommodations:

   (1) To refuse to permit, at the expense of a person with a disability, reasonable modifications of existing premises occupied or to be occupied by the said person, if the modifications may be necessary to afford the said person full enjoyment of the premises, in conformity with the provisions of the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code except that, in the case of a rental, the landlord may, where it is reasonable to do so, condition permission for a modification on the renter's agreeing to restore the interior of the premises to the condition that existed before the modification, reasonable wear and tear excepted.

   (2) To refuse to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, or services, when such accommodations may be necessary to afford said person with a disability equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling, including reasonable modification to common use portions of the dwelling, or

   (3) In connection with the design and construction of covered multi-family dwellings for first occupancy after March thirteenth, nineteen hundred ninety-one, a failure to design and construct dwellings in accordance with the accessibility requirements for multi-family dwellings found in the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code to provide that:

(i) The public use and common use portions of the dwellings are readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities;

(ii) All the doors are designed in accordance with the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code to allow passage into and within all premises and are sufficiently wide to allow passage by persons in wheelchairs; and

(iii) All premises within covered multi-family dwelling units contain an accessible route into and through the dwelling; light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and other environmental controls are in accessible locations; there are reinforcements in the bathroom walls to allow later installation of grab bars; and there are usable kitchens and bathrooms such that an individual in a wheelchair can maneuver about the space, in conformity with the New York state uniform fire prevention and building code.

   19. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this subdivision, it shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice of any employer, labor organization, employment agency, licensing agency, or its employees, agents, or members:

   (1) to directly or indirectly solicit, require, or administer a genetic test to a person, or solicit or require information from which a predisposing genetic characteristic can be inferred as a condition of employment, pre-employment application, labor organization membership, or licensure; or

   (2) to buy or otherwise acquire the results or interpretation of an individual's genetic test results or information from which a predisposing genetic characteristic can be inferred or to make an agreement with an individual to take a genetic test or provide genetic test results or such information.

   (b) An employer may require a specified genetic test as a condition of employment where such a test is shown to be directly related to the occupational environment, such that the employee or applicant with a particular genetic anomaly might be at an increased risk of disease as a result of working in said environment.

   (c) Nothing in this section shall prohibit the genetic testing of an employee who requests a genetic test and who provides written and informed consent to taking a genetic test for any of the following purposes:

   (1) pursuant to a workers' compensation claim;

   (2) pursuant to civil litigation; or

   (3) to determine the employee's susceptibility to potentially carcinogenic, toxic, or otherwise hazardous chemicals or substances found in the workplace environment only if the employer does not terminate the employee or take any other action that adversely affects any term, condition or privilege of employment pursuant to the genetic test results.

   (d) If an employee consents to genetic testing for any of the aforementioned allowable reasons, he or she must be given and sign an authorization of consent form which explicitly states the specific purpose, uses and limitations of the genetic tests and the specific traits or characteristics to be tested.

   20. [repealed]

   21.  Nothing in this section shall prohibit the offer and acceptance of a discount for housing accommodations to a person with a disability, as defined in subdivision twenty-one of section two hundred ninety-two of this article. 

 

§ 296-a. Unlawful discriminatory practices in relation to credit.

   1. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any creditor or any officer, agent or employee thereof:

   a. In the case of applications for credit with respect to the purchase, acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, repair or maintenance of any housing accommodation, land or commercial space to discriminate against any such applicant because of the race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, marital status, disability, or familial status of such applicant or applicants or any member, stockholder, director, officer or employee of such applicant or applicants, or of the prospective occupants or tenants of such housing accommodation, land or commercial space, in the granting, withholding, extending or renewing, or in the fixing of the rates, terms or conditions of, any such credit;

   b. To discriminate in the granting, withholding, extending or renewing, or in the fixing of the rates, terms or conditions of, any form of credit, on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, marital status, disability, or familial status;

   c. To use any form of application for credit or use or make any record or inquiry which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification, or discrimination as to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, marital status, disability, or familial status;

   d. To make any inquiry of an applicant concerning his or her capacity to reproduce, or his or her use or advocacy of any form of birth control or family planning;

   e. To refuse to consider sources of an applicant's income or to subject an applicant's income to discounting, in whole or in part, because of an applicant's race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, marital status, childbearing potential, disability, or familial status;

   f. To discriminate against a married person because such person neither uses nor is known by the surname of his or her spouse. This paragraph shall not apply to any situation where the use of a surname would constitute or result in a criminal act.

   2. Without limiting the generality of subdivision one of this section, it shall be considered discriminatory if, because of an applicant's or class of applicants' race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, sex, marital status or disability, or familial status, (i) an applicant or class of applicants is denied credit in circumstances where other applicants of like overall credit worthiness are granted credit, or (ii) special requirements or conditions, such as requiring co‑obligors or reapplication upon marriage, are imposed upon an applicant or class of applicants in circumstances where similar requirements or conditions are not imposed upon other applicants of like overall credit worthiness.

   3. It shall not be considered discriminatory if credit differentiations or decisions are based upon factually supportable, objective differences in applicants' overall credit worthiness, which may include reference to such factors as current income, assets and prior credit history of such applicants, as well as reference to any other relevant factually supportable data; provided, however, that no creditor shall consider, in evaluating the credit worthiness of an applicant, aggregate statistics or assumptions relating to race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, marital status or disability, or to the likelihood of any group of persons bearing or rearing children, or for that reason receiving diminished or interrupted income in the future.

   3‑a. It shall not be an unlawful discriminatory practice to consider age in determining credit worthiness when age has a demonstrable and statistically sound relationship to a determination of credit worthiness.

   4. a. If so requested by an applicant for credit, a creditor shall furnish such applicant with a statement of the specific reasons for rejection of the applicant's application for credit.

   b. If so requested in writing by an individual who is or was married, a creditor or credit reporting bureau shall maintain in its records a separate credit history for any such individual. Such separate history shall include all obligations as to which such bureau has notice with respect to which any such person is or was individually or jointly liable.

   5. No provision of this section providing spouses the right to separately apply for credit, borrow money, or have separate credit histories maintained shall limit or foreclose the right of creditors, under any other provision of law, to hold one spouse legally liable for debts incurred by the other.

   6. Any person claiming to be aggrieved by an unlawful discriminatory practice engaged in by a regulated creditor, in lieu of the procedure set forth in section two hundred ninety‑seven of this article, may file a verified complaint with the superintendent, as provided hereinafter; provided, however, that the filing of a complaint with either the superintendent or the division shall bar subsequent recourse to the other agency, as well as to any local commission on human rights, with respect to the grievance complained of.

   7. In the case of a verified complaint filed with the superintendent the following procedures shall be followed:

   a. After receipt of the complaint, the superintendent shall make a determination within thirty days of whether there is probable cause to believe that the person named in the complaint has engaged in or is engaging in an unlawful discriminatory practice. If the superintendent determines there is no such probable cause, the complaint shall be dismissed. If the superintendent determines that there is such probable cause, he or she shall attempt to resolve such complaint by conference and conciliation. If conciliation is achieved, the terms shall be recorded in a written agreement signed by the creditor and complainant, a copy of which shall be forwarded to the commissioner.

   b. If conciliation is not achieved, the superintendent or his or her designated representative shall conduct a hearing with respect to the alleged violation of this section. All interested parties shall be entitled to adequate and timely notice of the hearing. Such parties shall have the right to be represented by counsel or by other representatives of their own choosing; to offer evidence and witnesses in their own behalf and to cross‑examine other parties and witnesses; to have the power of subpoena exercised in their behalf; and to have access to a written record of such hearing. The superintendent or his or her representative shall not be bound by the strict rules of evidence prevailing in courts of law or equity. The testimony taken shall be under oath and a record shall be made of the proceedings. A written decision shall be made by the superintendent or his or her designated representative separately setting forth findings of fact and conclusions of law. A copy of such decision shall be forwarded to the commissioner.

   c. If the superintendent finds that a violation of this section has occurred, the superintendent shall issue an order which shall do one or more of the following:

   (1) impose a fine in an amount not to exceed ten thousand dollars for each violation, to be paid to the people of the state of New York;

   (2) award compensatory damages to the person aggrieved by such violation;

   (3) require the regulated creditor to cease and desist from such unlawful discriminatory practices;

   (4) require the regulated creditor to take such further affirmative action as will effectuate the purposes of this section, including, but not limited to, granting the credit which was the subject of the complaint.

   d. Any complainant, respondent or other person aggrieved by any order or final determination of the superintendent may obtain judicial review thereof.

   8. Where the superintendent makes a determination that a regulated creditor has engaged in or is engaging in discriminatory practices, the superintendent is empowered to issue appropriate orders to such creditor pursuant to the banking law. Such orders may be issued without the necessity of a complaint being filed by an aggrieved person.

   9. Whenever any creditor makes application to the superintendent or the banking board to take any action requiring consideration by the superintendent or such board of the public interest and the needs and convenience thereof, or requiring a finding that the financial responsibility, experience, charter, and general fitness of the applicant, and of the members thereof if the applicant be a co‑partnership or association, and of the officers and directors thereof if the applicant be a corporation, are such as to command the confidence of the community and to warrant belief that the business will be operated honestly, fairly, and efficiently, such creditor shall certify to the superintendent compliance with the provisions of this section. In the event that the records of the banking department show that such creditor has been found to be in violation of this section, such creditor shall describe what action has been taken with respect to its credit policies and procedures to remedy such violation or violations. The superintendent shall, in approving the foregoing applications and making the foregoing findings, give appropriate weight to compliance with this section.

   10. Any complaint filed with the superintendent pursuant to this section shall be so filed within one year after the occurrence of the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice.

   11. The superintendent is hereby empowered to promulgate rules and regulations hereunder to effectuate the purposes of this section.

   12. The provisions of this section, as they relate to age, shall not apply to persons under the age of eighteen years. 

 

§ 296-b. Unlawful discriminatory practices relating to domestic workers.

   1. For the purposes of this section: "Domestic workers" shall have the meaning set forth in section two of the labor law.

   2. It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for an employer to:

   (a) Engage in unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature to a domestic worker when: (i) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment; (ii) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual; or (iii) such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

   (b) Subject a domestic worker to unwelcome harassment based on gender, race, religion or national origin, where such harassment has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

 

§ 297. Procedure.

   1. Any person claiming to be aggrieved by an unlawful discriminatory practice may, by himself or herself or his her attorney at law, make, sign and file with the division a verified complaint in writing which shall state the name and address of the person alleged to have committed the unlawful discriminatory practice complained of and which shall set forth the particulars thereof and contain such other information as may be required by the division. The commissioner of labor or the attorney general, or the chair of the commission on quality of care for the mentally disabled, or the division on its own motion may, in like manner, make, sign and file such complaint. In connection with the filing of such complaint, the attorney general is authorized to take proof, issue subpoenas and administer oaths in the manner provided in the civil practice law and rules. Any employer whose employees, or some of them, refuse or threaten to refuse to cooperate with the provisions of this article, may file with the division a verified complaint asking for assistance by conciliation or other remedial action.

   2. a. After the filing of any complaint, the division shall promptly serve a copy thereof upon the respondent and all persons it deems to be necessary parties, and make prompt investigation in connection therewith. Within one hundred eighty days after a complaint is filed, the division shall determine whether it has jurisdiction and, if so, whether there is probable cause to believe that the person named in the complaint, hereinafter referred to as the respondent, has engaged or is engaging in an unlawful discriminatory practice. If it finds with respect to any respondent that it lacks jurisdiction or that probable cause does not exist, the commissioner shall issue and cause to be served on the complainant an order dismissing such allegations of the said complaint as to such respondent.

   b. Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph a of this subdivision, with respect to housing discrimination only, after the filing of any complaint, the division shall, within thirty days after receipt, serve a copy thereof upon the respondent and all persons it deems to be necessary parties, and make prompt investigation in connection therewith. Within one hundred days after a complaint is filed, the division shall determine whether it has jurisdiction and, if so, whether there is probable cause to believe that the person named in the complaint, hereinafter referred to as the respondent, has engaged or is engaging in an unlawful discriminatory practice. If it finds with respect to any respondent that it lacks jurisdiction or that probable cause does not exist, the commissioner shall issue and cause to be served on the complainant an order dismissing such allegations of the said complaint as to such respondent.

   3. a. If in the judgment of the division the circumstances so warrant, it may, at any time after the filing of the complaint, endeavor to eliminate such unlawful discriminatory practice by conference, conciliation and persuasion. Each conciliation agreement shall include provisions requiring the respondent to refrain from the commission of unlawful discriminatory practices in the future and may contain such further provisions as may be agreed upon by the division, the complainant, and the respondent, including a provision for the entry in the supreme court in any county in the judicial district where the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice was committed, or where any respondent resides or maintains an office for the transaction of business, or where the housing accommodation, land or commercial space specified in the complaint is located, of a consent decree embodying the terms of the conciliation agreement. The division shall not disclose what has transpired in the course of such endeavors.

   b. If a conciliation agreement is entered into, the division shall issue an order embodying such agreement and serve a copy of such order upon all parties to the proceeding, and if a party to any such proceeding is a regulated creditor, the division shall forward a copy of the order embodying such agreement to the superintendent.

   c. If the division finds that noticing the complaint for hearing would be undesirable, the division may, in its unreviewable discretion, at any time prior to a hearing before a hearing examiner, dismiss the complaint on the grounds of administrative convenience. However, in cases of housing discrimination only, an administrative convenience dismissal will not be rendered without the consent of the complainant. The division may, subject to judicial review, dismiss the complaint on the grounds of untimeliness if the complaint is untimely or on the grounds that the election of remedies is annulled. 

   4. a. Within two hundred seventy days after a complaint is filed, or within one hundred twenty days after the court has reversed and remanded an order of the division dismissing a complaint for lack of jurisdiction or for want of probable cause, unless the division has dismissed the complaint or issued an order stating the terms of a conciliation agreement not objected to by the complainant, the division shall cause to be issued and served a written notice, together with a copy of such complaint, as the same may have been amended, requiring the respondent or respondents to answer the charges of such complaint and appear at a public hearing before a hearing examiner at a time not less than five nor more than fifteen days after such service and at a place to be fixed by the division and specified in such notice. The place of any such hearing shall be the office of the division or such other place as may be designated by the division. The case in support of the complaint shall be presented by one of the attorneys or agents of the division and, at the option of the complainant, by his or her attorney. With the consent of the division, the case in support of the complainant may be presented solely by his or her attorney. No person who shall have previously made the investigation, engaged in a conciliation proceeding or caused the notice to be issued shall act as a hearing examiner in such case. Attempts at conciliation shall not be received in evidence. At least two business days prior to the hearing the respondent shall, and any necessary party may, file a written answer to the complaint, sworn to subject to the penalties of perjury, with the division and serve a copy upon all other parties to the proceeding. A respondent who has filed an answer, or whose default in answering has been set aside for good cause shown may appear at such hearing in person or otherwise, with or without counsel, cross examine witnesses and the complainant and submit testimony. The complainant and all parties shall be allowed to present testimony in person or by counsel and cross examine witnesses. The hearing examiner may in his or her discretion permit any person who has a substantial personal interest to intervene as a party, and may require that necessary parties not already parties be joined. The division or the complainant shall have the power reasonably and fairly to amend any complaint, and the respondent and any other party shall have like power to amend his or her answer. The hearing examiner shall not be bound by the strict rules of evidence prevailing in courts of law or equity. The testimony taken at the hearing shall be under oath and a record made.

   b. If the respondent fails to answer the complaint, the hearing examiner designated to conduct the hearing may enter the default and the hearing shall proceed on the evidence in support of the complaint. Such default may be set aside only for good cause shown upon equitable terms and conditions.

   c. Within one hundred eighty days after the commencement of such hearing, a determination shall be made and an order served as hereinafter provided. If, upon all the evidence at the hearing, the commissioner shall find that a respondent has engaged in any unlawful discriminatory practice as defined in this article, the commissioner shall state findings of fact and shall issue and cause to be served on such respondent an order, based on such findings and setting them forth, and including such of the following provisions as in the judgment of the division will effectuate the purposes of this article: (i) requiring such respondent to cease and desist from such unlawful discriminatory practice;(ii) requiring such respondent to take such affirmative action, including (but not limited to) hiring, reinstatement or upgrading of employees, with or without back pay, restoration to membership in any respondent labor organization, admission to or participation in a guidance program, apprenticeship training program, on the job training program or other occupational training or retraining program, the extension of full, equal and unsegregated accommodations, advantages, facilities and privileges to all persons, granting the credit which was the subject of any complaint, evaluating applicants for membership in a place of accommodation without discrimination based on race, creed, color, national origin, sex, disability or marital status, and without retaliation or discrimination based on opposition to practices forbidden by this article or filing a complaint, testifying or assisting in any proceeding under this article; (iii) awarding of compensatory damages to the person aggrieved by such practice; (iv) awarding of punitive damages, in cases of housing discrimination only, in an amount not to exceed ten thousand dollars, to the person aggrieved by such practice; (v) requiring payment to the state of profits obtained by a respondent through the commission of unlawful discriminatory acts described in subdivision three b of section two hundred ninety six of this article; and (vi) assessing civil fines and penalties in an amount not to exceed fifty thousand dollars, to be paid to the state by a respondent found to have committed an unlawful discriminatory act, or not to exceed one hundred thousand dollars to be paid to the state by a respondent found to have committed an unlawful discriminatory act which is found to be willful, wanton or malicious; (vii) requiring a report of the manner of compliance. If, upon all the evidence, the commissioner shall find that a respondent has not engaged in any such unlawful discriminatory practice, he or she shall state findings of fact and shall issue and cause to be served on the complainant an order based on such findings and setting them forth dismissing the said complaint as to such respondent. A copy of each order issued by the commissioner shall be delivered in all cases to the attorney general, the secretary of state, if he or she has issued a license to the respondent, and such other public officers as the division deems proper, and if any such order issued by the commissioner concerns a regulated creditor, the commissioner shall forward a copy of any such order to the superintendent. A copy of any complaint filed against any respondent who has previously entered into a conciliation agreement pursuant to paragraph a of subdivision three of this section or as to whom an order of the division has previously been entered pursuant to this paragraph shall be delivered to the attorney general, to the secretary of state if he or she has issued a license to the respondent and to such other public officers as the division deems proper, and if any such respondent is a regulated creditor, the commissioner shall forward a copy of any such complaint to the superintendent.

   d. The division shall establish rules of practice to govern, expedite and effectuate the foregoing procedure and its own actions thereunder.

   e. Any civil penalty imposed pursuant to this subdivision shall be separately stated, and shall be in addition to and not reduce or offset any other damages or payment imposed upon a respondent pursuant to this article. In cases of employment discrimination where the employer has fewer than fifty employees, such civil fine or penalty may be paid in reasonable installments, in accordance with regulations promulgated by the division.  Such regulations shall require the payment of reasonable interest resulting from the delay, and in no case permit installments to be made over a period longer than three years.

   5. Any complaint filed pursuant to this section must be so filed within one year after the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice. 

   6. At any time after the filing of a complaint with the division alleging an unlawful discriminatory practice under this article, if the division determines that the respondent is doing or procuring to be done any act tending to render ineffectual any order the commissioner may enter in such proceeding, the commissioner may apply to the supreme court in any county where the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice was committed, or where any respondent resides or maintains an office for the transaction of business, or if the complaint alleges an unlawful discriminatory practice under subdivision two a or paragraph (a), (b) or (c) of subdivision five of section two hundred ninety six of this article, where the housing accommodation, land or commercial space specified in the complaint is located, or, if no supreme court justice is available is such county, in any other county within the judicial district, for an order requiring the respondents or any of them to show cause why they should not be enjoined from doing or procuring to be done such act. The order to show cause may contain a temporary restraining order and shall be served in the manner provided therein. On the return date of the order to show cause, and after affording all parties an opportunity to be heard, if the court deems it necessary to prevent the respondents from rendering ineffectual an order relating to the subject matter of the complaint, it may grant appropriate injunctive relief upon such terms and conditions as it deems proper.

   7. Not later than one year from the date of a conciliation agreement or an order issued under this section, and at any other times in its discretion, the division shall investigate whether the respondent is complying with the terms of such agreement or order. Upon a finding of non compliance, the division shall take appropriate action to assure compliance.

   8. No officer, agent or employee of the division shall make public with respect to a particular person without his consent information from reports obtained by the division except as necessary to the conduct of a proceeding under this section.

   9. Any person claiming to be aggrieved by an unlawful discriminatory practice shall have a cause of action in any court of appropriate jurisdiction for damages, including, in cases of housing discrimination only, punitive damages, and such other remedies as may be appropriate, including any civil fines and penalties provided in subdivision four of this section, unless such person had filed a complaint hereunder or with any local commission on human rights, or with the superintendent pursuant to the provisions of section two hundred ninety six a of this chapter, provided that, where the division has dismissed such complaint on the grounds of administrative convenience, on the grounds of untimeliness, or on the grounds that the election of remedies is annulled, such person shall maintain all rights to bring suit as if no complaint had been filed with the division. At any time prior to a hearing before a hearing examiner, a person who has a complaint pending at the division may request that the division dismiss the complaint and annul his or her election of remedies so that the human rights law claim may be pursued in court, and the division may, upon such request, dismiss the complaint on the grounds that such person's election of an administrative remedy is annulled. Notwithstanding subdivision (a) of section two hundred four of the civil practice law and rules, if a complaint is so annulled by the division, upon the request of the party bringing such complaint before the division, such party's rights to bring such cause of action before a court of appropriate jurisdiction shall be limited by the statute of limitations in effect in such court at the time the complaint was initially filed with the division. Any party to a housing discrimination complaint shall have the right within twenty days following a determination of probable cause pursuant to subdivision two of this section to elect to have an action commenced in a civil court, and an attorney representing the division of human rights will be appointed to present the complaint in court, or, with the consent of the division, the case may be presented by complainant's attorney. A complaint filed by the equal employment opportunity commission to comply with the requirements of 42 USC 2000e 5(c) and 42 USC 12117(a) and 29 USC 633(b) shall not constitute the filing of a complaint within the meaning of this subdivision. No person who has initiated any action in a court of competent jurisdiction or who has an action pending before any administrative agency under any other law of the state based upon an act which would be an unlawful discriminatory practice under this article, may file a complaint with respect to the same grievance under this section or under section two hundred ninety six a of this article.

   10. With respect to cases of housing discrimination only, in an action or proceeding at law under this section or section two hundred ninety eight of this article, the commissioner or the court may in its discretion award reasonable attorney's fees to any prevailing or substantially prevailing party; provided, however, that a prevailing respondent or defendant in order to recover such reasonable attorney's fees must make a motion requesting such fees and show that the action or proceeding brought was frivolous; and further provided that in a proceeding brought in the division of human rights, the commissioner may only award attorney's fees as part of a final order after a public hearing held pursuant to subdivision four of this section. In no case shall attorney's fees be awarded to the division, nor shall the division be liable to a prevailing or substantially prevailing party for attorney's fees, except in a case in which the division is a party to the action or the proceeding in the division's capacity as an employer. In order to find the action or proceeding to be frivolous, the court or the commissioner must find in writing one or more of the following:

   (a) the action or proceeding was commenced, used or continued in bad faith, solely to delay or prolong the resolution of the litigation or to harass or maliciously injure another; or

   (b) the action or proceeding was commenced or continued in bad faith without any reasonable basis and could not be supported by a good faith argument for an extension, modification or reversal of existing law. If the action or proceeding was promptly discontinued when the party or attorney learned or should have learned that the action or proceeding lacked such a reasonable basis, the court may find that the party or the attorney did not act in bad faith.

 

§ 298. Judicial review and enforcement.

   Any complainant, respondent or other person aggrieved by an order of the commissioner which is an order after public hearing, a cease and desist order, an order awarding damages, an order dismissing a complaint, or by an order of the division which makes a final disposition of a complaint may obtain judicial review thereof, and the division may obtain an order of court for its enforcement and for the enforcement of any order of the commissioner which has not been appealed to the court, in a proceeding as provided in this section. Such proceeding shall be brought in the Supreme Court in the county wherein the unlawful discriminatory practice which is the subject of the order occurs or wherein any person required in the order to cease and desist from an unlawful discriminatory practice or to take other affirmative action resides or transacts business. Such proceeding shall be initiated by the filing of a notice of petition and petition in such court. Thereafter, at a time and in a manner to be specified by rules of court, the division shall file with the court a written transcript of the record of all prior proceedings. Upon the filing of a notice of petition and petition, the court shall have jurisdiction of the proceeding and of the questions determined therein, except that where the order sought to be reviewed was made as a result of a public hearing held pursuant to paragraph a of subdivision four of section two hundred ninety seven of this article, the court shall make an order directing that the proceeding be transferred for disposition to the appellate division of the supreme court in the judicial department embracing the county in which the proceeding was commenced. The court shall have power to grant such temporary relief or restraining order as it deems just and proper, and to make and enter upon the pleadings, testimony, and proceedings set forth in such transcript an order enforcing, modifying, and enforcing as so modified, or setting aside in whole or in part such order. No objection that has not been urged in prior proceedings shall be considered by the court, unless the failure or neglect to urge such objection shall be excused because of extraordinary circumstances. Any party may move the court to remit the case to the division in the interests of justice for the purpose of adducing additional specified and material evidence and seeking findings thereon, provided he or she shows reasonable grounds for the failure to adduce such evidence in prior proceedings. The findings of facts on which such order is based shall be conclusive if supported by sufficient evidence on the record considered as a whole. All such proceedings shall be heard and determined by the court and any appeal taken from its judgment or order shall be reviewed by the appropriate appellate court as expeditiously as possible and with lawful precedence over other matters. The jurisdiction of the courts over these proceedings, as provided for herein, shall be exclusive and their judgments and orders shall be final, subject to appellate review in the same manner and form and with the same effect as provided for appeals from a judgment in a special proceeding. The division's copy of the testimony shall be available at all reasonable times to all parties for examination without cost and for the purposes of judicial review of such order. Any appeal under this section and any proceeding, if instituted under article seventy eight of the civil practice law and rules to which the division or the board is a party shall be heard on the record without requirement of printing. The division may appear in court by one of its attorneys. A proceeding under this section when instituted by any complainant, respondent or other person aggrieved must be instituted within sixty days after the service of such order.

 

§ 298-a. Application of article to certain acts committed outside the state of New York. 

   1. The provisions of this article shall apply as hereinafter provided to an act committed outside this state against a resident of this state or against a corporation organized under the laws of this state or authorized to do business in this state, if such act would constitute an unlawful discriminatory practice if committed within this state.

   2. If a resident person or domestic corporation violates any provision of this article by virtue of the provisions of this section, this article shall apply to such person or corporation in the same manner and to the same extent as such provisions would have applied had such act been committed within this state except that the penal provisions of such article shall not be applicable.

   3. If a non-resident person or foreign corporation violates any provision of this article by virtue of the provisions of this section, such person or corporation shall be prohibited from transacting any business within this state. Except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, the provisions of section two hundred ninety-seven of this article governing the procedure for determining and processing unlawful discriminatory practices shall apply to violations defined by this subdivision insofar as such provisions are or can be made applicable. If the division of human rights has reason to believe that a non-resident person or foreign corporation has committed or is about to commit outside of this state an act which if committed within this state would constitute an unlawful discriminatory practice and that such act is in violation of any provision of this article by virtue of the provisions of this section, it shall serve a copy of the complaint upon such person or corporation by personal service either within or without the state or by registered mail, return receipt requested, directed to such person or corporation at his or her or its last known place of residence or business, together with a notice requiring such person or corporation to appear at a hearing, specifying the time and place thereof, and to show cause why a cease and desist order should not be issued against such person or corporation. If such person or corporation shall fail to appear at such hearing or does not show sufficient cause why such order should not be issued, the division shall cause to be issued and served upon such person or corporation an order to cease or desist from the act or acts complained of. Failure to comply with any such order shall be followed by the issuance by the division of an order prohibiting such person or corporation from transacting any business within this state. A person or corporation who or which transacts business in this state in violation of any such order is guilty of a class A misdemeanor. Any order issued pursuant to this subdivision may be vacated by the division upon satisfactory proof of compliance with such order. All orders issued pursuant to this subdivision shall be subject to judicial review in the manner prescribed by article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules.

 

§ 299. Penal provision.

   Any person, employer, labor organization or employment agency, who or which shall willfully resist, prevent, impede or interfere with the division or any of its employees or representatives in the performance of duty under this article, or shall willfully violate an order of the division or commissioner, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and be punishable by imprisonment in a penitentiary, or county jail, for not more than one year, or by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars, or by both; but procedure for the review of the order shall not be deemed to be such willful conduct.

 

§ 300. Construction.

   The provisions of this article shall be construed liberally for the accomplishment of the purposes thereof. Nothing contained in this article shall be deemed to repeal any of the provisions of the civil rights law or any other law of this state relating to discrimination because of race, creed, color or national origin; but, as to acts declared unlawful by section two hundred ninety six of this article, the procedure herein provided shall, while pending, be exclusive; and the final determination therein shall exclude any other action, civil or criminal, based on the same grievance of the individual concerned. If such individual institutes any action based on such grievance without resorting to the procedure provided in this article, he or she may not subsequently resort to the procedure herein

 

§ 301. Separability.

    If any clause, sentence, paragraph or part of this article or the application thereof to any person or circumstances, shall, for any reason, be adjudged by a court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment shall not affect, impair or invalidate the remainder of this article.