Posted August 10, 2016
Tenants at an apartment in Surrey are staging a protest about the living conditions, claiming they share their rooms with rats and bed bugs.
The building houses a number of elderly and disabled tenants, many of whom say they are struggling to leave the building due to a broken elevator that's been out of service for three months.
"They're telling us 'Oh we are waiting for the parts, we are waiting for the parts.' We have got elderly people in there. My roommate can't walk down the stairs, they don't care."
Muriel Wyatt, a member of ACORN, has been living at the apartment for 8 months, and with the help of neighbours, helps her roommate leave the building everyday.
She says the elevator was vital to the building, especially for those suffering from health problems.
"We have got an older man who lives here and he had a stroke. Now he has got to climb the stairs."
The elevator went out of service due to a fire that broke out in the end of May.
She says the owners of the property, Royal Providence Realty, promised tenants they would have a running elevator by July 16th, but the date has passed with service still non-existent.
Wyatt recalls an incident a few days after the fire shut down the elevator where she called 911 because she smelled smoke.
She says the owners of the building insisted she pay the bill for the emergency service.
"On June 1st, I phoned 911 because I smelled smoke. The operator told me to pull the alarm and I did. The owners were mad and said I should have called them. They said they were going to make me pay for the call."
The tenants are calling on the owners of the property, Royal Providence Management, to fix the elevator and to make sure the building and the tenants are safe.
Article by Taran Parmar for Roundhouse Radio