HOA Faces Backlash After Telling Residents To Remove BLM Signs From Yards
The HOA said all Black Lives Matter signs must be promptly removed
A homeowners’ association is getting called out after asking its members to remove Black Lives Matter signs from their yards over claims that it conflicts with a neighborhood governance written in 1994.
On Wednesday, the Hampsted Village HOA in New Albany, Ohio posted on Facebook asking residents to remove their Black Lives Matter yard signs citing a policy that exists in the association guidelines. “All Black Lives Matter signs placed on Hampsted Village area lots to further Hampsted Home Owners Supporting #BLM 7 Min 46 Sec of Silence, must be removed by the homeowner by no later than July 26, 2020 at 9:00 pm,” the post read in part. After residents took to social media to complain about the request, the association now says it was “a poorly worded message which lacked context and created significant miscommunication.”
According to 10TV, the original 1994 HOA mandate states, “no signs of any kind shall be displayed to the public view on or from any portion of the Hampsted Village Area except those signs approved by the Committee.” However, another portion of the document lists exceptions, including “a congratulatory sign for a high school graduation, or a sign announcing the birth of a child, or a charitable event.”
It also states, “political signs may be displayed only during the two week period before an election and must be promptly removed after the election.” All other signs must be approved by the Architectural Review Committee before they are displayed. Residents are confused, however, stating there have been many occasions where signs have remained much longer.
“I don’t understand how all of a sudden this particular sign has to be taken down,” John Wilson told 10TV. “There’s been signs in this neighborhood since I’ve lived here in February that have been up almost the entire time since I’ve been here. It just tells me that someone had to have complained about it.”
Others took to the HOA Facebook page to tell them exactly how they felt. “In today’s political climate, this is a poor choice HOA leadership to pick this battle. I guess since the homeowners pay for this it’s up to us to critically look if this is how we want to be represented,” resident Cathy Herron wrote. Others like Andrea Caron Wiltrout challenged the HOA’s notion that the Black lives Matter movement for racial justice has an “end date,” as the HOA kept referring to it as an “event.”
The HOA issued another post after people began sharing this online, saying that their original post was simply meant as a “public service reminder.”
“This is an appropriate moment for us to reflect on our design guidelines,” the HOA concluded on Facebook, “and we invite constructive input.”
Here’s hoping the HOA will be getting all the constructive input they are asking for.
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