Some NYCHA tenants in Queens say they haven’t had heat in almost a year


NEW YORK — Colder temperatures are heading our way, and tenants at a NYCHA housing complex in Queens fear they’ll face another winter without heat.

They tell CBS2’s Alecia Reid that they can’t get a solid answer from anyone.

“It’s been too long, too long. Lots of old people and children,” said one tenant.

Some tenants of Astoria Houses say they haven’t had heat since last December and are tired of complaining.

“I have to wear sweaters, jackets, sometimes hats, everything in my house,” tenant Anita Luker said.

RELATED STORY: NYCHA lawmakers and tenants call on agency to do more to improve living conditions

It’s a way people have been treated. But Barbara Torres, who has been a tenant for more than 20 years, has a list of dates and times she sued NYCHA.

“It was here on February 16 that I brought them to justice. Here, four, five and six, no heat,” she said.

In the meantime, she used portable heaters, but they burned plugs and sockets.

“Today they had to come and change my grips because of the radiator because it’s brittle,” Torres said.

CBS2 already visited Astoria Houses on November 20 for complaints of lack of heat and follow-up a subsequent rally at City Hall to protest NYCHA shortcomingsbut at the time, NYCHA claimed there was no outage.

READ MORE: ‘No heat, no hot water, no rent’: Astoria Houses residents frustrated by recurring heat and hot water outages

“It’s not fair that we have to pay our rent without heating,” Torres said.

Heat isn’t the only concern.

Some tenants report dealing with sewage seeping into their tubs and unknown substances on their walls. Fearing retaliation, many don’t push the issue, but Torres went to court over the asbestos in her bathroom.

“To be exposed to it through the mold, through all of that, and I had to fight so hard in court for them to come and tear down the wall,” she said.

Torres says the next time she faces NYCHA in court for heat-related complaints is December 19. We have contacted NYCHA for comment on the charges. So far we have had no news.


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