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Know Your Rights
Source: Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Subject: Housing & Environmental Justice
Type: Media Coverage

Letitia James to Introduce New Safe Housing Act

The legislation that is now known as the “Safe Housing Act” was spearheaded by Make the Road by Walking, City Council Members, and other community organizations. We have been active for over two years in bringing about the passage of the bill formerly called the “Healthy Homes Act”.


City Council Member Letitia James of Brooklyn will introduce legislation tomorrow, April 12, that will improve housing conditions for tenants living in the city’s worst buildings.

James and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn will unveil the new legislation, to be called the Safe Housing Act, on the steps of City Hall at 11:15 a.m. Thursday, along with members of Make the Road by Walking, New York City AIDS Housing Network, New York Immigration Coalition, Housing Here and Now, and the Urban Justice Center.

Under the legislation, every year the city would identify 200 buildings with the most housing code violations and target them for aggressive inspection, followup, and comprehensive repairs.

“Thousands of families in New York City live in buildings with dangerous conditions and many serious housing code violations,” said James “There are approximately 60,000 immediately hazardous housing code violations in New York City, mostly concentrated in neighborhoods where residents are low-income people of color.”

Among these violations are no heat or hot water, rats, broken front doors and other conditions that threaten the health and security of residents. The legislation will require landlords to make repairs within four months or the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development will do so at the landlord’s cost.