Breaking: tenants picket “slum lord’s” attempt to force them from apartments. Disabled and fix-income among them

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In the last hour, 900poundgorilla joined Rogers Park residents and activists to protest what many are describing as slum lords, citing inadaquate plumbing, mould, lack of heat and a dangerous lack of working smoke detectors throughout the building at 1246 West Pratt.

Since the 1246 Pratt LLC purchased the Astor House building in November, the company has filed at least 27 eviction cases against residents and have forced out at least a third of the building’s tenants. For the few who are getting the option to renew their leases, the property manager has announced plans to increase rent up to 57 percent.
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Tenant Daniel Pfeiffer hopes standing up for his rights will inspire residents elsewhere in the city to fight for fair, affordable housing and bring attention to the growing housing crisis in the Chicago area. “Low-income people are being pushed away. Where is there left for us to go? Because it is happening all over.”
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As the building’s owners turn their attention to renters who can afford to pay more for rehabbed units, current tenants suffer from bedbugs, mice, roaches and elevators that often break down. Some tenants are even without working plumbing and living without heat. Frequent elevator outages make it impossible for senior and disabled tenants to leave the building, sometimes for days at a time.
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As the building’s owners turn their attention to renters who can afford to pay more for rehabbed units, current tenants suffer from bedbugs, mice, roaches and elevators that often break down. Some tenants are even without working plumbing and living without heat. Frequent elevator outages make it impossible for senior and disabled tenants to leave the building, sometimes for days at a time.

“It’s a growing problem throughout the city. From South Shore to Howard Street, from the Lawrence House building in Uptown to the Château Hotel in Lakeview, the issue is money, and the developers want more. So they are trying to get rid of us,” says Laurence Williams, a tenant in the building.

The tenants will be joined by supporters from Northside Action for Justice, Metropolitan Tenants Organization and Communities United Against Foreclosure and Eviction.

Catch 900poundgorilla’s WC Turck and Brian Murray each Sunday 8-9am only on Our Town with Mike Sanders, at Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCPT AM and FM, and streaming online. Friend us on Facebook at Revolution and Beer. And if you have a cause to champion, please let us know as we work to become the grassroots support network for Chicago Activists and community organizers.

Catch the beer of the week review with 900poundgorilla’s WC Turck and Brian Murray each Sunday 8-9am only on Our Town, at Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCPT AM and FM, and streaming online. Friend us on Facebook at Revolution and Beer. And find all of the great beers we review each week at Louis Glunz Beer Inc., http://www.glunzbeers.com

About 900poundgorilla

W.C. Turck is a Chicago playwright and the author of four widely acclaimed books.His latest is "The Last Man," a prophetic novel of a world ruled by a single corporation. His first novel, "Broken: One Soldier's Unexpected Journey Home," was reccommended by the National Association of Mental Health Institutes. His 2009 Memoir, "Everything for Love" chronicled the genocide in Bosnia and the siege of Sarajevo. His third book "Burn Down the Sky" is published exclusively on Amazon Kindle. It was in Sarajevo at the height of the siege where he met and married his wife, writer and Artist Ana Turck. FOX NEWS, ABC, CBS News, the Chicago Tribune and The Joliet Herald covered their reunion after the war. He helped organized relief into Rwanda during the 1994 genocide. Turck has been a guest on WMAQ-TV, WLS in Chicago, WCPT, WBBM radio, National Public Radio, Best Of the Left and the Thom Hartmann show. He has spoken frequently on Human Rights, Genocide and Nationalism. In 2011, his play in support of the Occupy Movement, "Occupy My Heart-a revolutionary Christmas Carol" recieved national media attention and filled theaters to capacity across Chicago. He remains an activist to the cause of human rights and international peace. View all posts by 900poundgorilla

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