CHICAGO (CBS) — Neighbors battling the managers of their apartment complex got some high-profile help on Saturday. It’s a story we first brought you and continue to follow.
On Saturday, the Rainbow PUSH Coalition and federal housing officials stepped in at Concordia Place Apartments in the Riverdale neighborhood, amid complaints of mold, mice, and a lack of proper managementREAD MORE: Ravinia Festival Announces Lineup For 2021 Season
CBS 2’s Jeremy Ross reports on the problems, the progress, and the frustration.
Neighbors said pictures of decay, mold and mice are part of the history of Concordia Place, and tenants said you can add much of that to the present.
“You can hear them at night crawling on the walls … just scraping and trying to get in,” one tenant said. “I cried the other day. I’m kind of emotional right now.”
“I see how we been living out here,” she added. “We been accepting it, because we didn’t have any leadership.”
“I had rodents galore,” another tenant said. “The mice ran me up out sometimes.”
“My neighbor said, ‘Baby what are you doing in your car?’ I said, ‘The mice done took over.’ My friend says, ‘You gonna let the mice win?’ I said yes,” she added. “I didn’t pay for no mice to live up in here … We shouldn’t live like this. A dog lives better than this.”
“We found certain patterns that we found quite disturbing,” Rev. Jesse Jackson said.
Jackson, Bishop Tavis Grant, and representatives from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) talked about progress between New York-based Capital Realty Group, the managers of hundreds of low-income housing units at Concordia Place.
The Rainbow PUSH Coalition said the company promised to make all repairs that some neighbors say have lingered for two decades.READ MORE: 10 Inmates In One Pod Test Positive For COVID-19 At Lake County Jail In Waukegan
“No, I don’t believe it. When I see it, then I’ll believe it. Come back to me once they do something,” tenant Lasheca Moss said.
Moss said she’s lived at Concordia Place for 21 years. That includes the time the CBS 2 Investigators discovered the dumpsters were gone for a time, leaving hundreds with nowhere to put their garbage for days.
Some tenants shared images of mold and mice droppings in their homes; complaints HUD officials are listening to.
“We want to work with you. We want to work with the reverend. We want to work with the bishop to resolve these issues,” said Jim Cunningham, Deputy Regional Administrator at HUD.
While many who live here are happy to see city, community, and federal leaders echo their concerns; some ask, what took so long?
“I sat down with you downtown at HUD back in 2015. We still talking about these same issues,” one tenant said.
“About time the people here talking. It’s about time,” Moss said.
Now she and others at Concordia Place wait for something some say they haven’t seen in decades: results
“Even the maintenance do not want to do the work,” one tenant said. “Reaching management is, like, impossible.”
In a statement, spokeswoman Mika Stambaugh said:MORE NEWS: Man Charged With Shooting Two Women In South Austin In December
“Concordia Place Apartments has an open line of communication with HUD, The City of Chicago and Rainbow PUSH since last Thursday. All of the complaints from residents are being addressed as maintenance is scheduling with each unit. Our goal is to be fully compliant by the end of next week. We always urge residents to follow HUD protocols to file a complaint so we can properly address them as quickly and efficiently as possible. Our goal is to have a safe and healthy community for everyone to enjoy.”