Lack of Water, Unsanitary Conditions Prompt Seniors to Protest at City Housing Project

Residents of Lakeview Towers tell TRNN’s Eddie Conway the city has been negligent in maintaining aging complex

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Story Transcript

EDDIE CONWAY, TRNN: We’re standing here in front of a senior citizens’ building here in Baltimore. This is Eddie Conway for the Real News. I’m getting ready to talk to one of the guys that’s organizing this.

SPEAKER: What’s going on is that we have been without water. Not hot, not cold water, for at least four days, since Friday. We have no water. They’re giving us gallons of water to pour in our toilets to hopefully flush it out. It is so unsanitary. We have vulnerable adults in this building. Handicapped individuals, [neighbors], people in wheelchairs. And we need something done now.

CONWAY: What’s the address of this building?

SPEAKER: This is 717 and 727 Druid Park Lake Drive. But where the issues is is that 727, we have not had running water, no kind of water, for four days.

CONWAY: Okay. All right. Do you–what about the heat? Is there heat in there?

SPEAKER: Ain’t no heat.

CONWAY: There’s no heat.

SPEAKER: Ain’t no heat. Ain’t no water. I got piss in my toilet. I can’t flush my toilet.

CONWAY: You can’t flush your toilet.

SPEAKER: No. can’t do nothing. Can’t wash no dishes.

CONWAY: Let me see one of those little bottles. This is–this is what they’re giving you for water? One or two a day, [inaud.] can’t flush the toilet.

SPEAKER: Yes, sir. They give us water, they give water, by one or two a day. They’re more like [enough] right here. But we have a problem with this, [inaud.]. They [inaud.] send us water here. And [inaud.].

CONWAY: How do you take a shower?

SPEAKER: [Inaud.] We had to get buckets. We had to get buckets of water from somewhere else and boil it, and dump it, and get water from somewhere else.

CONWAY: And you guys are senior citizens in this building, and handicapped people and children in there. And it’s a Baltimore City Housing Authority building?

SPEAKER: Yes, sir. I believe Baltimore City, they need to start doing their job. Baltimore City needs to start doing their job. [Because we need water.]

CONWAY: Little babies here in the cold, no water, no heat, can’t even shower.

SPEAKER: Last year it was mice. And bedbugs. They bite my grandbaby. The mice are trying to [inaud.] off his milk bottle. It’s disgusting.

CONWAY: This is real serious out here. It’s almost freezing out here. I’m freezing myself. In order for people to be out here like this, after four or five days of no water and no heat. They have been pushed to their limit and they want some kind of relief from the city. And there’s people over here, some of them have gone back in because it’s so cold. But somebody in the city needs to address this problem.

Four or five days ago they evacuated the building because of carbon monoxide, and their solution was to cut the water off and cut the stuff off, utilities in here. And what they really need to do is they need to have an emergency maintenance team up here to address what’s going on and fix this stuff so that these people in here can have water to flush their toilets, to take showers, to drink, to take care of themselves. There are senior citizens in this city, and they shouldn’t be left to be out in the street like this protesting in the freezing weather.

Eddie Conway for the Real News.

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DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.