Article Courtesy of Florida
By Lamaur Stancil
Published April 28, 2018
Jenifer Raymond's rainbow flag, commonly known as the gay pride flag, has flown
high above her home in the Ashwood Lakes subdivision for a couple of years.
She'd heard no complaints about the flag, and even received a few compliments
from neighbors about it.
But for a few days this week, she was
concerned she may have to take it down.
An email that appeared to come from the homeowners
association notified her landlord last week that the flag, a
symbol dear to gays and lesbians, had generated complaints
and been deemed "offensive" and "detrimental to the
"Allowing the flag to be flown is setting a precedence for
other homeowners to fly other offensive flags," the email to
Raymond's landlord states.
One offensive flag cited as an example was the Confederate
But Wednesday, her landlord, Anthony Posada, said he was
notified by the association that the email sent to him did
not reflect orders from the board. What happened was one
overzealous subcommittee member wanted the flag down.
"The HOA board has apologized for the
incident and told Jenifer that there was never an issue with
the flag," Posada said.
Jenifer Raymond said someone in her community wanted
her to remove her rainbow flag.
"It was the right thing to do," Posada
said. "I support my tenant. Jenifer is a great tenant and a good person."
Raymond said a board member arrived at her home Wednesday to give a personal
Homeowners Association Vice President Robert Kelso said Chris Fahey, who had
been appointed as a member of the Architectural Review Committee, had sent
the email to Posada. Fahey brought up the issue of the rainbow flag at a
board meeting a few months ago, but Kelso said the board did not take
"He didn't have the right or the authority to speak on behalf of the board,"
Kelso said about Fahey, who was removed from the Architectural Review
Committee this week.
Raymond, 39, is a mother of three who said she began living as a lesbian six
"What's important to me, is a lot of what gay youth are facing today," she
said. "There's still a lot of bullying in the schools. I belong to Space
Coast Pride to help promote acceptance. That's what the flag stands for."
The emails Posada received about the flag had started because he was
inquiring about putting in a new roof. Then he received an email from Fahey
about the rainbow flag violating community standards. Posada responded that
the association's rules didn't prohibit such a flag, and he found a state
statute preventing HOAs from limiting which flags can be erected at a home.
Fahey responded with an excerpt from the community's ground maintenance
section. It states "no weeds, vegetation, rubbish, debris, garbage, objects,
waste, or materials of any kind whatsoever shall be placed or permitted to
accumulate upon any portion of a lot, which would render it unsanitary,
unsightly, offensive, or detrimental to the subdivision."
The flag was considered an "object" and had been declared "offensive," Fahey
wrote in the email.
Fahey could not be reached for comment.