Over a dozen local residents and supporters rallied yesterday (Tuesday) to protest what they described as unsanitary conditions Morgan Properties locations in Alexandria’s West End.
Residents, ranging from children to seniors, held up photos they said were taken in the homes — including nests of rats, filthy water flowing into a bathtub, mold and holes in the wall.
Carlos, a resident at one of the local Morgan Properties locations, is living there through Section 8 housing and said exponentially increasing utility costs have put that in jeopardy, and that Morgan Properties staff have been inaccessible to ask about unexplained increases in utility costs.
“This is my first time living in a place and I don’t want to leave,” Carlos said. “They haven’t done anything about the mice, and I’ve only been here six months. Others have been dealing with this for years.”
Jessica has been living in Morgan Properties for three years and said residents have become used to being belittled by management.
“We had a water pipe burst on the third floor,” said Jessica. “All the bed, the furniture, the clothing, shoes, they all got wet. We went to management and they said they couldn’t help and then they were laughing.”
Another resident, Ashley, was with a group of supporters from a group called FTP DC. Ashley had also been a tenant at one of the Morgan Properties residences for two years.
“I was at Brookdale for over a year and I had a hole in the ceiling that they didn’t fix until I was moving out,” Ashley said. “People have to go to court over things, like they’d double charge rent.”
Ashley said her apartment was rife with rats, a recurring concern from many local residents.
Ingris Moran, lead organizer with regional organization Tenants and Workers United, said that the protestors are demanding a change in administration overseeing the properties. ALXnow reached out to a public relations firm listed as the media contact on the Morgan Properties website, but received no answer at time of writing.
In emails between Tenants and Workers United and Morgan Properties, property management said they were willing to meet with Tenants and Workers United and the City of Alexandria, but Moran said that her organization would not agree to discussions with Morgan Properties that didn’t include representatives from local residents.
Photo via Tenants and Workers United/Facebook
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