Public Housing Residents Say Units Need Work

People living in public housing units told News 5 they are unhappy with their units, and they may even be unsafe.  People at RV Taylor talked about the units, and invited us inside, to share how they feel they’ve been kept in the past few years.

In Roger Wiliams Homes, there’s silence.  The complex used to be a place where the units were filled, but now, it’s being vacated.  They’re beyond repair.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development found the Mobile Housing Department did not comply with HUD Regulations for financial operations.

Residents living in R.V. Taylor Plaza say they’re feeling the shortcomings.  “We had like a whole lot of mold along the baseboard and at the bottom and all up in the windows,” said one resident who didn’t want her face on camera.  “We called, and called, and called, and the only thing they did was send somebody out here to paint over it. It’s not solving the problem it’s still there.”

The woman lives at the unit with several children, and she’s worried about their health.

“My grandkids, they have like.. breathing problems, and the mold isn’t making it any better,” she said.

The HUD report also concludes the Housing Board failed to occupy one-third of its Public Housing.

“I don’t think they’re really trying to move nobody over here for real,” the woman said.  “There’s so many of them empty over here, they’re abandoning… then when people move they steal the stuff out of there.”

Residents in R.V. Taylor think funds need to be devoted to hiring more maintenance.

“She said they either fired them or laid them off, or they’re down in Roger Williams,” one resident said she was told when she called to ask for a repair.

“You need to have somebody on point when you have repair problems,” the first woman we spoke with said.  “When my toilet overflows or my hot water heater bursts, or something like that… they need to have somebody out here at all times.”

They say they’ve been waiting for help, but they’re not sure when it will come.

The Housing Board received more than 20 million dollars in capital funds to reduce vacancies throughout all the low income housing, but vacancies have actually increaded since a vacancy reduction plan was submitted.

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