Tenants Rally for Housing Lawsuit

February 15, 2012 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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NYCHA Already Fined $37K in Brooklyn Housing Court

LIVINGSTON STREET — Beleaguered tenants of the Bed-Stuy Rehab apartment building will announce plans Thursday to continue their legal fight to get the conditions of their five-building, 80-apartment housing complex finally addressed.  

The tenants plan to rally and have a press conference Thursday at 9:30 a.m. in front of their New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) building at 701 Willoughby Ave. in Bedford-Stuyvesant.

They claim NYCHA has continuously refused to address the “horrendous conditions,” according to the plaintiffs’ attorney, Marty Needelman, of Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation A.

Recently a judge in Brooklyn Housing Court granted the tenants’ motion and held NYCHA in contempt of court, fining NYCHA over $37,000, relating to conditions going back to 2009.

The tenants’ new case will now address conditions that have developed since, worsened or are affecting tenants not part of the original case.

The tenants filed their original lawsuit on Dec. 14, 2009, seeking an order to repair the conditions, including extended periods of no heat or hot water, mold, leaks, rats, extreme unsanitary conditions, and lack of basic repairs or other services.  Lack of heat and hot water, mice, mold and leaks continue to plague these tenants, plaintiffs say.

“To think that our slumlord is the New York City Housing Authority!” said Cassandra Harrell, president of the Bedford Stuyvesant Rehabs Resident Association. “We the residents deserve better and we demand better. We have been waiting for far too long and we will not suffer in silence”

For years, residents have logged complaints with NYCHA and documented photographs of the conditions.

“However, it has been to no avail!  We have finally gotten some work done but so many other fundamental problems continue,” Harrell said.

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