New lawsuit demands rent refunds for NYCHA tenants left without heat, hot water

A new lawsuit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court Thursday demanded NYCHA provide rent refunds for the 300,000 tenants who were without heat or hot water at some point last winter.

Ruth Britt lived without heat for three months in the Patterson Houses in the South Bronx. She’s one of the lead plaintiffs in the class action suit.

“I hope they do better fix what needs to be done and move on,” she told PIX11 News.

Nancy Newman is an attorney with the Legal Aid Society and worked on the case.

"It is clear that NYCHA violated the law and it is obligation to provide really the most basic services but a landlord has to provide which is heat and hot water and for that they are entitled to an abatement," Newman said.

NYCHA sent PIX11 a statement responding to the suit saying, “every dollar spent on a rent abatement would be one less dollar for staff and repairs that we need to restore and maintain heat service. That is ultimately what our residents need.”