After Landing in the Headlines, Wis. Landlord Allows Gay Couple to Keep Pride Flag Displayed

Kevin Kollman speaks with NBC 2. (Source:Screenshot via NBC 2)

(Edge) A landlord in Oak Creek, Wis. is reversing his stance and allowing a gay couple to leave their rainbow/American Pride flag on display, NBC News reports.

Kevin Kollmann and his partner Merle Malterer made headlines last week when they spoke with local news stations and explained that they were being asked to take down the Pride flag hanging outside of their home in Country Oaks Apartments. If not, they faced eviction. 

The men said they were being singled out, as other residents in the complex had flags hanging. 

"This is a place we live. It's our home. This is who I am, this is who we are," Kollman told NBC 2 at the time, adding he feels like he and his partner are "being kind of singled out."

"It's a symbol of America, it's a symbol of our pride in America being a gay couple here in Oak Creek," he said. 

Now the couple said they got a letter from the owner of the apartment complex.

"The 5-day notice issued to you last week on March 25th has been rescinded," the letter reads, according to NBC News.

The CEO of Bieck Management, which owns Country Oaks Apartments, said in the letter that he will be discussing a new policy that allows flags that "meet certain guidelines such as size, placement, location, etc." 

"I would appreciate your input into this new policy, so perhaps we could meet sometime in the near future to discuss," Kenneth Bieck said in the letter.

Kollmann told NBC News he and Malterer just drafted a response to the eviction notice when they found the letter taped to their door. 

The couple said when they spoke with Bieck by phone last week, he wanted the flag removed because it was visible from the management office. 

Back in January, Kollmann said he complied with the policy when he was asked to remove a Green Bay Packers flag. But he decided to fight back when it came to the Pride flag.

"This really means a lot to the LGBTQ community," Kollmann told NBC News. "Pride and love win every time."

The couple have been living at the Country Oaks apartments for nearly six years.


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