NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — With walls covered in mold, as well as rats and cockroaches everywhere, people in an apartment building in the Hunts Point section of the Bronx have had enough.
As CBS 2’s Alice Gainer reported, the tenants have launched a fight to boot their landlord.
As soon as one walks into Abigail Acevedo’s apartment, the mold is visible everywhere. The ceiling drips.
Equally horrifying is a room in Lisa Ortega’s apartment.
“Some of the mold, like in different rooms, it will have, like, hair spores,” Ortega said.
Mold was spotted hanging in a doorway, from moldy pipes and broken windows. Roaches and rodents were also seen, and several tenants went so far as to adopt cats to control the problem.
“Mice were crawling under the door by the dozens,” a tenant said.
Residents who have lived in the building at 1058 Southern Blvd. in the Bronx for decades said it was not always as bad as it is now.
“The landlady who took over for her husband three years ago, she does not do anything,” a longtime tenant said.
According to New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, Miriam Shasho – landlord for the 55-unit building, ranks 10th for worst landlords in the Bronx and 13th for New York City overall – accumulating 355 violations.
“She’s a slumlord,” a tenant said.
The Department of Housing and Preservation stepped in, and has so far spent over $22,000 on emergency repairs – including two fuel deliveries just to get heat in the building.
Meanwhile, angry tenants showed up here to the landlord’s home in Brooklyn Monday night demanding answers, but they were met with no response.”
CBS 2 was likewise met with no response at Shasho’s home.
And as the mold continues to grow thick, tenants’ patience continues to wear thin.
“We have a solution,” a tenant said. “Why don’t you get out? Then we can manage our own building.”
Most tenants said they cannot afford to move out, and are forced to stay even as more problems move in.
The building is currently in the Department of Housing and Preservation Alternative Enforcement Program, which fines landlords for not making repairs.
The department is working with tenants to file to have the court appoint an outside party to manage and repair the building.
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