Residents of a city Housing Authority complex are sending a message to City Hall after filing a lawsuit against NYCHA demanding an end to substandard living conditions.
“We should not have to live with rats because they’re not our pets, we should not have to live with cracked cabinets because we did not break it!” said Keisha Taylor, co-founder of Holmes-Isaacs Coalition.
Tenants of Holmes Tower and Isaacs Houses on the Upper East Side formed a coalition and filed a group Housing Part Action asking NYCHA to fix broken elevators, vermin infestations, a lack of heat and hot water, broken intercoms and more saying it’s a problem not just for them, but for complexes across the city.
“It’ll open up their eyes to start paying more attention to us. That we’re not going to take things just sitting down,” said one advocate.
The governor already has declared a state of emergency for NYCHA and on Tuesday, a federal monitor Greg Russ said the authority needs $40 billion to get in good shape and should convert 62,000 apartments to private management through a program known as RAD.
That program creates capital to fund repairs.
Coalition members however say that would jeopardize the long term affordability of their homes.
“Privatization is not good for the residents, glittery is not always great, eviction rates, we do not want to be a part of the homeless problem,” said Saundrea Coleman, co-founder of Holmes-Isaacs Coalition.
The judge denied the city’s motions to get out of the case and told lawyers to try to negotiate together before reconvening.