Melanie Powell is a 25-year-resident in a trailer park in Rainier, Oregon. She believes she has become the victim of anti-gay harassment and graffiti.
The lesbian grandma, who flies a rainbow flag from her porch, said she has received an “inordinate number of citations” since the new property manager, Maureena Schmaing, was hired.
“I’m tired of being yelled at, screamed at, vulgar language, being accused of doing stuff we are not doing,” Powell said.
Because many of her neighbors said they have not experienced the same kind of treatment Powell has, they believe she may be the target of anti-gay hate. Her landlord, however, denies this discrimination.
“I’m a landlord,” Schmaing said. “I follow the Manufacturing Housing Oregon Law, and I follow all the Title 10 Law with any park site I manage.”
“I’ve watched it enough where I had to come down here myself and stop the manager from yelling at her the way she was,” one neighbor, William Pierce said.
Powell said besides the flag outside, she keeps to herself.
“I got my gay pride flag hanging out front,” she said. “I’ve kept my business inside my house. I don’t put it in people’s faces.”
She even witnessed two young men spray-painting the words “Die dike” on the side of her house.
Powell is currently seeking legal representation.
“I see a lot of discrimination and a lot of hurting words,” she said. “I don’t know what I would do without having all these people on my side.”