The New York City Housing Authority is being sued by a tenant advocacy group after years of inaction to enforce existing laws. The issues originally came to light in October of 2017 when the New York Times ran a series of articles detailing how the NYCHA had not performed its duties to monitor public housing for mold and lead paint issues, resulting in thousands of children being unnecessarily exposed to toxic substances.
Nearly six months later, the NYCHA is still failing to enforce the law, and children are still suffering from dangerous substances, along with failures of landlords to provide hot water and other necessities for sanitary living. In response, a lawsuit has been filed by the non-profit group At Risk Community Services, seeking a court-appointed monitor to ensure the NYCHA does its job.
Slumlords have preyed on generations of New Yorkers, which necessitated the creation of oversight bureaus in the first place. But when those granted oversight powers fail, the legal system becomes the only place left where the average citizen can gain justice. The NYCHA has clearly failed and continues to fail.
Though non-profit groups are seeking to force the New York City Housing Authority to require landlords to provide a safe environment, this does little to address damage that has already been done. For the thousands of children who have already suffered learning disabilities or growth deficiencies due to exposure to lead paint, years of hard work still await.
If your child of the child of someone you love has suffered due to exposure to lead or another toxic substance, the legal system may be your only hope at justice. Affording treatment and education can be very expensive for those exposed to these toxins. Please, consult with an experienced attorney about your case and hold responsible those whose unsafe inaction put children at risk.