STAND FOR TENANT SAFETY (STS) is a citywide coalition of tenant rights and legal services organizations. We organize tenants into associations and coalitions to strengthen their ability to go toe-to-toe with bad-acting, multi-millionaire landlords, and to get public agencies to do their job of protecting New York City residents.
Many New Yorkers understand the incredible distress and hardship caused by construction work within their buildings. For rent regulated tenants construction and renovation are also a nightmare, but landlords have a particular incentive to use dangerous or negligent construction as a way to harass tenants out. When landlords successfully evict, displace, or harass out rent stabilized tenants, their apartments can be leased at a much higher rent for the next tenant, adding to the loss of affordable housing stock in New York City.
Tenants, rent regulated or not, suffering from construction as harassment live amidst deplorable and destitute conditions, which include:
· Collapsed ceilings in their homes;
· Children inhaling lead contaminated dust;
· Incapacitated seniors stumbling on cracked floors and obstructive pile-ups of construction debris;
· Having no heat or hot water in freezing temperatures; and
· Not being able to exit the building because the staircase was removed with little to no notice.
Construction-as-harassment has sadly become the pattern for New York City tenants. The benefit to bad acting landlords is too high and the time for action is now! We must stop this behavior and stop rewarding bad actors that use haphazard execution of construction and unlivable conditions to harm tenants who don’t have the ability or desire to leave their homes and communities.