Evacuated tenants of Philadelphia apartment still in Limbo

June 30, 2008 4:35:37 PM PDT
Tenants of an apartment building shut down by the city are still living in limbo. "We were definitely told by August one, you're on your own if you haven't found a place," one displaced tenant said.

The tenants have grown tired of quietly bearing the painful displacement. Two weeks ago, more than 50 families were forced out of the Lindley Court apartments in Logan when L&I sited it for unsafe living conditions. Tenants came to court as a judge considered what the owner must do for them. "My main concern is getting adequate funding, immediate residence and securing our property. Everything we own is in there," said displaced tenant Leonard Sanders.

No one has been given access to items left in their apartments. Now that it's clear the building will not be repaired, tenants say they want reasonable support as they struggle to find decent affordable housing. Displaced resident Stephen Von told us, "I, and my son, need enough money to be able to move."

For Rosa Rivera the concern is finding a safe place to live and getting her money back from the owners.

Tenants will be able to get some personal items from their apartments Tuesday. But, they are looking for help to permanently move out. The judge is trying to make sure that happens. "That would be moving expenses, security deposit, first months rent, and things of that nature. The tenants here are the victims. They didn't do anything wrong," said attorney and tenant advocate George Gould.

The judge is now considering what support, if any, must be given to tenants as they move.