Gay man 'rejected from London flatshare because of his sexuality'

Olly Barter said this was the first time he had received such a 'blatant' reaction

Click to follow
The Independent Online

A man looking for a new flat in London has said he was "shocked" when he allegedly received a message from a potential housemate rejecting him because he was gay.

29-year-old copywriter Olly Barter had been searching for a new home ahead of a move from Farnham, Surrey, when he was reportedly sent the explanation after responding to an advert on Spareroom.co.uk for a room in Tooting.

"It’s the first time I’ve had such a blatant reaction," he told The Independent. "I’ve been searching on and off for six months and anticipated that something like this could happen, but you’re never really ready for it."

barter.jpg

The message from the advertiser apparently read: "It looks like one flatmate would prefer a straight individual. It is terrible, but it is something this person would not negotiate..."

Asked if he replied, Barter said: "I think I was in so much shock… I could have been really angry but I couldn’t quite get over the message.

"Part of the reason I say I’m gay is to avoid situations where I end up living with bigots.

"The reaction from other people has been the same as mine, people can’t get their heads round how this is happening in London, in 2015."

 

Under the 2010 Equality Act, it is illegal for a landlord to discriminate against a tenant or anyone associated with them on the grounds of their sexual orientation.

Fortunately Barter has said the experience has only made him more resolute in finding a flat in London.