Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Thursday, November 8, 2012

114 NYCHA Buildings STILL Without Power

Eight days after Sandy and 21,000 residents in 114 NYCHA buildings remain without power:

For more than a week, hundreds of public housing tenants — mostly ailing or elderly — have been trapped inside their upper-floor apartments, waiting in vain for the return of elevators, lights, heat and water.

They say they’ve yet to get help from NYCHA and, instead, are relying on a steady stream of volunteers for food, water and a glimmer of hope.

“Nobody from management has come up here,” said Jose Reyes, 57, who has left his 13th-floor apartment in the Red Hook Houses in Brooklyn only once over the last week. “It’s incredible that in the greatest nation in the world, this is happening here.”

As of Tuesday – eight days after Hurricane Sandy battered New York – 21,000 NYCHA residents in 114 buildings across Brooklyn, Queens and lower Manhattan were still without power.

In these developments, there are residents who are sick or too frail to negotiate the pitch-dark staircases that now serve as the only means of entry or exit until elevators are restored. Living high above the city, they survive without running water, and with toilets that don’t flush, refrigerators that don’t function and heat that seems to diminish each day as temperatures dip.

Reyes, who weighs 350 pounds, has osteoporosis and a weakened ankle from surgery that won’t allow him to schlep up and down 13 stories.

A Daily News reporter on Tuesday helped two of Reyes’ sisters, Marelnand Enily, drag a shopping cart full of water jugs and canned food up the unlucky 13 flights in total darkness. Urine pooled on one floor, and the load seemed heavier each step up.

Reyes fled his apartment on Sunday, and Sandy reached the first-floor windows of Red Hook West the following day. When Reyes returned two days later, fetid black water filled the basement of his building.

Since then, he’s remained in his cramped one-bedroom with only one two-hour break.
“I went downstairs once to charge my phone. I stayed a couple of hours, looked around and went back up. I had to take painkillers and I’ve been here since.”

He can’t walk his rat terrier, Pinto, so the little dog uses a pad in the tiny living room to do his business. Reyes’ wife cooks meals from whatever is left over: “Spam, a little rice, canned food.” He drinks instant coffee and watches the tropical fish in an aquarium that no longer circulates swim slower and slower each day.

“I’m knowing about the outside world with this little transistor radio – battery operated, old school,” he says. In the dark at night, “I listen to 1010 WINS, cuddle up with the wife, reminisce about the old days.

“It’s amazing to think that with all this technology, they can’t resolve this,” he said.

Brooklyn City Councilman Stephen Levin grew frustrated Tuesday trying to get NYCHA to restore power to three buildings at the Gowanus Houses in Brooklyn. Con Ed was ready to turn it on, but a NYCHA contractor had yet to show up to finish repairing the authority’s electrical system that was damaged during the flood.

“The level of dysfunction and apathy from NYCHA to the tenants of NYCHA is shocking,” Levin said. “I can’t get an answer for the last three and a half hours. I get responses like, ‘We’re trying.’ ”
In a 10th-floor apartment at Gowanus, Daisy Torres needs an electronically powered respirator to help her breathe. Without power for the last eight days, “It’s been terrible.”

Her daughter, Wendy, 28, has spina bifida and uses a wheelchair, and her husband, Antonio, is confined to bed as he battles prostate cancer. The days since Sandy knocked out the power at Gowanus have been an endless nightmare.

“I feel liked we’re trapped in here,” she said. “We can’t do anything.”

Clearly Bloomberg does not give a shit about these people - at all.

This is a disgrace.

Tell me again how this isn't like Katrina?

1 comment:

  1. The Shock Doctrine at work: Bloomberg has made it explicitly clear that those pesky poor people are to be driven out of NYC, and that the local economy is to be based on its status as a circuit box for global capitalism, and as a playground for the affluent.