Couple Told To Remove Gay Pride American Flag Or Be Evicted From Wisconsin Apartment:'I Feel Like We're Being Kind Of Singled Out Here'

Gay Pride, American Flag
Revelers celebrate with a rainbow American flag during the Gay Pride parade on June 26, 2011 in New York City. The parade took on extra significance following Friday night's legalization of same-sex marriage in New York, often regarded as the birthplace of the gay rights movement. Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images

A Wisconsin couple says they are subjects of discrimination after receiving an eviction notice over a gay pride American flag.

Kevin Kollman and Merle Malterer have lived in their apartment at the Country Oaks Apartments in Oak Creek, Wisconsin for six years but, last week, the couple found an eviction notice in the mail because of the flag.

Kollman and Malterer provided a copy of the letter to NBC News, which reads, "Tenant shall not, without permission, in the building rules or specific written approval of landlord, physically alter or redecorate the premises, cause any contractor's lien to attach to the premises, commit waste to the premises or the property of which it is part, or attach or display anything which substantially affects the exterior of the premises or the property of which it is part."

The couple's gay pride American flag, which features 50 white stars on a navy background in the upper left-hand corner and rainbow stripes rather than the traditional red and white, hangs from a pole affixed to the dividing wall between their outdoor space and that of their neighbors.

Speaking to WBBH TV, the couple said the letter gave them five days to take down the flag, or they would face eviction from their apartment.

"Personally, I feel like we're being kind of singled out here because it's what it is," Kollmann told WBBH.

The property owner, who was not named, told WBBH that the couple was asked to take down a Green Bay Packers flag in January over concerns it might look as if they were advertising for the NFL team. They complied with the request.

The owner added that the new request is not about discrimination but a violation of the lease agreement. According to the owner, no one is allowed to have a flag hanging anywhere on the property, WBBH said.

However, Kollmann told the NBC affiliate that others who live in the complex have flags hanging from their residences.

Another resident, Ken Miller, told WBBH that he has lived in the complex for three years and had an American flag flying outside for at least two of those. "I've never been told to take them down," Miller said.

Speaking to NBC News, the couple said they contacted Kenneth Bieck, the chief executive officer for the company who manages the complex, and Bieck said he wanted them to remove the flag as it's visible from the management office.

"My flag is not doing anything. It's just a symbol of who we are, where we came from and our love for the United States," Kollman told NBC News.

The property owner told WBBH he did not want to evict Kollmann and Malterer from their apartment and was willing to talk to them about the issue. While the couple said they planned to renew their lease with the complex over the weekend, they also were considering legal action and have no plans to remove the flag from their rental unit.