NEW YORK — Two lesbians who live in an apartment in New York City have filed a lawsuit against their landlord for refusing to recognize their relationship as a marriage.
Dava Weinstein, 68, and Doroty Calvani, 64, have lived together for 36 years. In 2011, the two traveled to Iowa to “wed,” just months before NewYork state legalized the practice.
Last year, as the lease for the apartment was up for renewal, Weinstein added Calvani on the form as a co-tenant. She told reporters that she did so to secure Calvani’s rights to the apartment in the event that Weinstein died during the lease period.
However, landlord Jacob Weinreib refused to recognize Calvani on the lease.
“New York State does not recognize Dorothy as Dava’s spouse,” he wrote to the women in a letter.
As Weinreib would not budge about the matter, Weinstein signed the lease without Calvani. However, the two then contacted Lambda Legal, an organization that works in the courts on behalf of homosexuals, which then filed suit.
“I’ve lived in this apartment for nearly forty years, and built a home here with my spouse for the last 36 years,” Weinstein commented in a statement. “If something were to happen to me, Dorothy should not have to worry about whether the landlord will try to evict her because she’s not on the lease. That is one of the protections married people are supposed to have. Our landlord is standing in the way of us taking steps to protect our family, something that is of particular importance to us as we get older.”
“There needs to be something that holds landlords in general and this landlord accountable,” she told the New York Post. “If we can serve that function, we’re glad to do it.”
Lambda had filed a similar suit last year against DSA Management and building owner, Nicholas Place, LLC after a landlord declined to recognize two lesbians on the lease for their Harlem apartment. Two months later, the landlord changed his mind and agreed to allow both women to be named in the lease.
As previously reported, prior to the June Supreme Court ruling that struck down key components of DOMA, a number of Christian organizations warned that the homosexual agenda would take a toll on businesses nationwide.
“If you’re a Christian, and you thought the HHS mandate was bad with being forced to pay for abortifacients,” Peter LaBarbera told Christian News Network, “what happens when you’re a businessman and you’re forced to subsidize homosexual ‘marriage,’ but you agree with God that homosexuality is an abomination?”
Florists, bakers, bed and breakfast owners and funeral directors have all been the target of complaints and lawsuits over the past year for their refusal to accommodate homosexual practices.
“I hope the states as units will rise up and say, ‘I’m sorry. We refuse to recognize that. You want to send the reserves in? Bring them on. But we’re not just going to give up without a fight,’” attorney Steve Crampton of Liberty Counsel remarked. “I think there is a very real element of, ‘We’ve had enough. This far and no further.’”