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DENVER-Many in Denver’s real estate community had hoped that the era of racial discrimination was over, but a national federal study that includes Denver says blacks and Hispanics still are not treated as fairly as white counterparts. The study by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, used “pair testing” where blacks, whites and Hispanics were sent out to buy homes or rent apartments.

It shows that 19.4% of the black potential renters faced discrimination, below the national average of 21.6%. For Hispanics, 15.1% of the renters faced discrimination, the lowest in the nation. The national average was 25.7% for renters.

Although minority renters face less discrimination in the Denver area than in most places in the country, experts say any is too much.

Mark Williams, executive director of the Apartment Association of Metro Denver, says he does believe discrimination happens.

“I would be shocked if you told me that two out of five people faced discrimination, but I’m not shocked that almost one out of five faces discrimination,” Williams tells GlobeSt.com.

He notes his group today holds almost 10 times as many seminars and training groups on discrimination and legal issues than it used to. “We hold something like 23 or 24 training groups a year, compared with two or three in the past,” he says.

He expects that most of the discrimination occurs in the small apartment complexes owned by individuals, and not by the large, national chains.

“Some of these small owners may not even know about the association,” he tells GlobeSt.com. “But the large, national firms take advantage of what we offer, in addition to holding frequent in-house training sessions.

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