State slaps Long Island hamlet known for Nazism with housing discrimination suit

May 21, 2017 11:37AM

German American Settlement League and Eric Schneiderman

German American Settlement League and Eric Schneiderman

An anti-discrimination case is forcing a community known for housing Nazi sympathizers to abide by state and federal housing laws. The German American Settlement League in the rural Long Island town of Yaphank will be forced to end policies that limit ownership to people of German descent, according to the New York Post.

During World War II, the league named streets for Adolf Hitler and other Third Reich figures and held pro-Nazi marches at the former Camp Siegfried. Now, the leagues new settlement with the state will force the enclave of roughly 40 house to change leadership and end discriminatory practices.

A historic shot of a home in the community

 

Still, some residents say that the racism is all in the past.

“There’s a mixed bag; it’s not like it was,” Fred Stern, a member of the league’s board and a 40-year resident, told the Post. “It’s not like whatever they’re saying. If you went to every house and asked people’s nationality, it wouldn’t be any different than any other neighborhood.”

Another local, Kaitlyn Webber, added that her “family’s always been very open. We’ve never had any issues with anyone discriminating against anyone up here.”

But two former residents tell a different story, claiming he German American Settlement League policies hindered their attempts to sell their homes, and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman found the league “continued to make new membership and property re-sale within the GASL community unreasonably difficult.” [NYP]Christopher Cameron