The Real Deal New York

Upper West Side residents gain support in rent strike over rats

City officials ask state agencies to investigate alleged infestation at West 107th Street buildings

July 02, 2014 01:10PM

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From left: rat and 207 West 107th Street

From left: Rat and 207 West 107th Street

Residents at two allegedly rat-infested buildings on the Upper West Side vowed to stick with their more than one month-long rent strike until conditions improve.

The issue has attracted the attention of local elected officials and state Senator Bill Perkins.

The tenants at 207 and 209 West 107th Street say rats are still swarming the stoops come nightfall, and GPS Realty, the building’s landlord, has so far refused to exterminate them, the New York Daily News reported. The owner did not respond to the Daily News’ calls for comment, but denied allegations that it also conducts surprise visits and checks residents’ immigration status.

Local elected officials have now joined the fray, imploring state and federal agencies to investigate, according to the Daily News. State Senator Bill Perkins has helped tenants organize and attended a protest outside the building on Monday.

“This is a classic slumlord situation,” state Senator Bill Perkins told the Daily News. “This is one of the worst situations I’ve seen in a long time.” [NYDN]Tom DiChristopher

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