Danish housing company case

Concerning S.S.M, an Iraqi citizen currently residing in Denmark [represented by counsel] vs Denmark for violation of article 6 of CERD.

The petitioner was registered as an applicant for renting an apartment with the Danish housing company, DAB. The DAB informed him that an apartment was available and asked him whether he would be interested in it. The petitioner confirmed that he was interested. However, under the existing legislation the municipality of Hoje Tastrup had to approve the contract. The municipality informed the petitioner that his application had not been approved.

The police refused to investigate the matter. The Social Appeals Board informed the petitioner that the apartment had been assigned to another person, therefore it would be impossible to give S.S.M full satisfaction in his request as neither the Appeals Board nor the Municipality had legal authority to cancel a rental agreement made by the housing company. Thus a complaint was sent to CERD.

The Social Appeals Board then adopted its final decision on the matter and concluded that the municipality’s decision was invalid, as S.S.M did fulfil the conditions for approval to the housing facility. In the meantime, the municipality had decided to alter its previous decision and approve the petitioner for the apartment applied for or an equivalent one.

The Committee notes that, despite the new decision of the municipality and the one of the Social Appeals Board, the petitioner was not provided with an apartment equivalent to the one initially applied for, nor granted compensation for the damages caused to him as a result of the first decision of the municipality. The Committee notes, however, that the petitioner did not institute civil proceedings and, therefore, has not exhausted domestic remedies. Thus the committee declared this communication to be inadmissible.

24. March 2020

CERD 19/2000
  • Decision: 15. August 2001
  • Comm: Race