Brooklyn Elected officials are calling on the New York City Housing Authority to address what they call "uninhabitable" living conditions at a building at the Bushwick Houses.
On Friday, Councilmember Jennifer Gutierrez, Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez, Assemblymember Maritza Davila, Sen. Julia Salazar, and Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso called on NYCHA leadership to fix leaks and remedy mold issues in at least 17 apartments at 24 Humboldt Street.
Juanita Ayala, 82, a resident of the complex told NY1 how she’s been affected. Her pots and pans have covered her living room floor for three months since a leak started ruining a wall and her cabinets in her kitchen.
“Because the cabinet was almost in the floor it was wet inside. They removed the cabinet from my wall and they never, never come to put my cabinets back,” Ayala said. “When they took out these cabinets mice, roaches, everything inside the wall in there.”
Images from other apartments in the building show paint peeling, yellow stains, mold all from leaks throughout the building. Advocates say this issue has been going on since last spring. However, residents at other buildings at the complex said issues are prevalent in all the buildings.
Natonia Dutes, a resident at 811 Flushing Ave, said management wasn’t took so long to come out to make a repair damage in her ceiling from a leak, she took matters into her own hands.
“It was all yellow and nasty looking. So I got on the ladder i scraped it. My ex-boyfriend was here with me. He scraped it with me. We scraped it as good as we got. And then we used the sander in there, I had to buy my own supplies so I can fix the apartment,” Dutes said.
Dutes said she’s replaced her floors, her fridge and her stove all herself. Still there are also leaks in two of her walls and damage from those leaks she’s waiting to be remedied. She said it’s unacceptable for anyone to wait this long, but she feels even worse for the many elderly residents in the complex.
“I understand it is the projects, but the projects shouldn’t be called the projects because they’re making it a project that is incomplete. It should be a project that’s completed and make sure everyone has a safe well home being,” Dutes said.
In a statement NYCHA said, "NYCHA staff and plumbers have been working to address these leaks, and will continue to identify and repair these lines until all work is completed. Our dedicated staff works 24/7 to address issues caused by crumbling infrastructure due to decades of disinvestment. Plumbers made repairs to at least five leaks on the H and I kitchen riser lines and stack stoppages on March 22 and to the roof drain on the F line on April 4, and we are working today on repairs to the D line and have scheduled repairs for early next week on the waste line on the F and G lines. Once all the leaks are repaired, NYCHA staff will expedite and coordinate all plastering, painting and carpentry work needed in affected units."