Neighborhood Clause Forbids Non-White Residents (Photos)

A racist clause from the 1960s found in a California neighborhood agreement contract has sparked controversy.

"No person except those of the white Caucasian race shall use, occupy or reside upon any residential lot or plot in this subdivision, except when employed in the household of a white Caucasian tenant or owner," reads Clause 13 of the Lake Hills CC&R, KABC reports.

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The Foster family stumbled upon the words while signing the agreement after purchasing the home near Sacramento.

Dating back to 1961, the individual currently in charge with enforcing the contract's rule said he had no idea that clause existed.

Yet some longtime residents say they were aware the rule existed. Given it was clearly never enforced -- with non-whites living alongside them as neighbors regardless -- they didn't think it was worth protesting against.

The Fosters say that even though it is not enforced, the rule is still problematic.

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"Everyone knows that you can't enforce things like that. It still sends a message," said Liese Foster.

Another neighbor, new resident Dwight Holkko, also agreed with their sentiments.

"It should be reversed just to get it off the record ... what their motivation is," said Holkko.

Brent Dennis of the El Dorado Hills Community Services District, the body in charge of rule enforcement in the area, says they were unaware the rule was still there.

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Agreeing it violates federal law, he adds it will be removed promptly.

While many were outraged by the clause's continued existence, some didn't see the big deal.

"It's from 1961 and it is never enforced as it would violate state a federal laws no has anyone asked the new tenants to move seeing as there is a multitude of races whom live there," one user wrote on the KABC Facebook page. "[They're] making an issue out of something that is a non issue to anyone living there so it seems they're doing it for attention."

Others strongly disagreed.

"That's how subliminal racism continues to get to exist," writes another user in response. "It needed to be brought to attention so that it will officially be removed. The question that needs to be asked why was it still in the paperwork? You can't convince me that those who deal with the paperwork did not know that it was there!!"

Sources: KABCKABC/Facebook / Photo Credit: Elliot Erwitt via Sophie Davey Photo, KABC

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