NYCHA Residents Skeptical Over Rescue Trust Passage

By Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo & Plotkin LLP

The 400,000 New York City residents who live in NY City Housing Authority apartments are skeptical that the recently passed Rescue Trust bill will improve their lives.  Can you blame them?   They have lived with the broken promises of repairs, fixed buildings, and the removal of poisonous lead paint from their buildings.

In November 2021, these residents found out that more than 5,000 public housing apartments in buildings long ago deemed “lead free” contain lead paint and the number is expected to grow. 

The alarming truth about these units has quietly emerged behind the scenes after NYCHA was forced to re-inspect 134,000 apartments officials suspected might contain lead. That included the 84,000 units previously declared “lead free.”

The re-inspections began in 2018 after federal prosecutors filed a damning complaint detailing years of deceit by NYCHA managers to cover up squalid conditions — from toxic mold infestations to busted elevators to rat invasions — tormenting many of NYCHA’s 400,000 tenants.

Given NYCHA’s history, it is little wonder that public housing residents are skeptical of anything that is done.  Lead paint poisoning and utter mismanagement are just two of the reasons fueling the skepticism.

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