School Closings, Early Dismissals

How Monica’s making it happen this week

Rhonda Murphy, who lives at the Butler Houses on Webster Avenue in the Bronx, says the trash has been piling up outside and even inside the building.

On top of that, Murphy says the elevators are broken.

“I live on the 16th floor and I carry my daughter on my back to go to school,” said Murphy.

A spokesperson from the New York City Housing Authority says they cleared the trash by 4 p.m. Friday and the elevators are fixed.

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Barbara Luray, the president of the Fort Independence Houses in the Bronx, says she's afraid to use the water in her bathroom in light of news that there were two confirmed cases of legionnaires in her building.

“I don’t know what to tell my families. Don’t bathe. Don’t shower. Animals live better than this,” said Luray.

A spokesperson for the Health Department said, “both patients have risks for Legionnaires’ disease and have been discharged from the hospital. The Health Department will evaluate the building’s plumbing to look for evidence of Legionella bacteria in the building’s water system.”

Experts say Legionnaires can be contracted by breathing in contaminated water droplets and cant be spread from person to person.

A spokesperson for NYCHA tells PIX11 News they are currently cleaning and jetting the lines of 13 hot water tanks, prioritizing the buildings that had confirmed cases of Legionnaires.

NYCHA confirmed there were three cases of Legionnaires at the St. Nicholas Houses in Harlem.

Congressman Adriano Espaillat called on an immediate and comprehensive testing protocol in all NYCHA buildings within New York’s 13 Congressional District.

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NYCHA workers who were supposed to be fixing apartments were allegedly throwing sex parties involving supervisors, workers, and in some cases even residents.

Sources tell Pix11 News that three staff members have been suspended without pay for 30 days.

“It began with heat, lead paint, mold, horrible conditions, now we are talking about sex, lies, pictures and potential videotape and a coverup,” said council member Mark Gjonaj.

“What disturbs me is all of this was happening during working hours, which means means the residents were not receiving the services they were supposed to,” said Monique Johnson, the tenant association president of the Throggs Neck Houses.

A spokesperson for the Department of Investigation (DOI) says they "did receive a complaint this month and referred the allegation to NYCHA for appropriate action. Earlier this summer, NYCHA officials spoke to DOI about staffing concerns at the Throggs Neck Houses and NYCHA indicated it would take certain steps.”

"We take this matter very seriously," a NYCHA spokesperson said. "The moment concerns were raised, we began an investigation. Based on that investigation, NYCHA's new leadership determined staff had to be reassigned for the good of residents and employees alike."

You can watch this week’s 'Monica Makes It Happen' show by clicking here.