Seniors Protest Poor Chicago Housing Conditions

Chicago Housing Authority says a $13.5 million facelift is on the way

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Public housing senior citizens marched at Chicago's housing authority headquarters on Wednesday, brandishing pictures they said showed mold, rodent and cockroach infestations in their apartments. Anthony Ponce reports. (Published Wednesday, Aug 7, 2013)

    A group of seniors who say they're fed up with the conditions of public housing took their fight Wednesday to the steps of the Chicago Housing Authority.

    Armed with photos of mold, bathroom fixtures beyond the point of ever being sanitary and evidence of rodent and cockroach infestation, they said the conditions inside the Judge Slater Apartments on 43rd Street are practically unlivable.

    "This is the wall in the bathroom where paint is coming off the wall," tenant Alphonso Jones said.

    "We have molds in some of the apartments, and we've taken that to management," he said.

    The group brought forth the same complaints five months ago.

    "Nothing has changed," Jones said.

    After Wednesday morning's protest, the CHA promised the residents a face-to-face meeting in the next month about the building's conditions. 

    "CEO Charles Woodyard and his executive staff will be meeting with residents," CHA spokeswoman Wendy Parks confirmed.

    Parks also pointed out that help is already on the way in the form of a $13.5 million facelift for the building.

    "All the apartments will be getting new baths," she said. "We will be looking at flooring, we'll be looking at painting, we'll be looking at a number of things that we're continuing to do."

    The management company that runs the building argues residents' pictures don't accurately represent the building as a whole, but residents clearly don't feel that way.

    "We are demanding that the mayor get involved to address these critical issues," tenant Frances Banks said.

    The CHA says renovation of the building will be complete by early next year.