Housing Court Judge Sheldon Halprin visits a Harlem building and changes begin

Rebecca Spitz reports for NY1 on Housing Court Judge Sheldon Halprin’s hands-on approach:

Housing court Judge Sheldon Halprin took a tour of a three-building complex on West 145 Street in Manhattan Wednesday.

“We have no shower, wooden floors where we get maggots and bedbugs. We had to throw out all our furniture,” said tenant Eileen Caraballo.

Throwing out all your furniture when fighting a bed bug infestation is a desperate measure that is familiar to us. As much as we are told how it is unnecessary to do so as long as proper pest control measures are taken, we understand how it sadly comes to that for so many people.

A tenant organizer says rather than making repairs, the landlord has been busy renting open apartments to the city’s Department of Homeless Services. In fact, of the 60 apartments in the complex, about two-thirds are now occupied by formerly homeless families.

Longtime tenants say they believe the landlord is using that and the lack of repairs to try to force them to leave. As a result, more than a dozen tenants joined forces — and sued. They say nothing happened until Judge Halprin announced he planned to visit.

Judge Halprin did a very cool thing. We hope these tenants will soon get relief.

5 comments

  1. Crawledon

    How inspiring is this? First, a judge that cares enough to vist these buildings, and secondly, tenants that are willing to organize and fight for their rights!

    It takes a few people that are not complacent, rather, they can feel outrage at being forced to live with these unacceptable conditions and it takes courage and the ability to work together for what should be a given, a right to live in a habitable apartment.

    Bravi.

  2. Crawledon

    I think we can hope, but not hold our breath. I believe there are some judges that tend to be more “pro tenant” and some more “pro landlord.” Perhaps it will start a trend with those more disposed to the tenant side of things.

    For the more pro landlord judges, some of our work here is to implement more enforceable protocol for landlords and pest control operators. Then the law is the law, whichever bed you sleep in.

  3. juan Rlon

    i would like to say that this judge is a crook who violated the law and evicted me elegaly he left the bronx housing court taking my rights as a tenant with him now sabrina craus new york courts are corupted i woud like to see this judge behind bars along with the H.R.A i want justice but for a hispanic man like me to find justice here is like wining the lotery this man is not a judge he is a disgrace a crook sheldon halpring you are a criminal and i will not stop till you and sabrina craus see me in federal court i will sue you for everyting you got you and your clerks are criminals worst the the taliban and yes for every pain and sofering you cause me i hate you i wish you the worst in life i hope you can live with the guilt but hell i think you have no integrety for me so as far i know you are garbage

  4. mini fox

    Yes indeed Sheldon Halprin is the best judge, atty, person you will have the pleasure of knowing and I know this because I worked as his secretary many moons ago! Just thought I would chime in to say I am very proud of how he fair he has always handled housing issues… THEN (CLO/LAS) and how happy I am to learn that he is still making a difference! Way to go Shelly!

Copyright © 2012 New York vs Bed Bugs Top