Residents of 2100 Memorial, a senior living facility that got flooded during Harvey, made a statement Tuesday by demonstratively paying their October rent despite being told they have to leave.
They sang, “We shall not be moved” to the tune of “We Shall Overcome” as they walked into the leasing office one by one with a check.
The Houston Housing Authority owns 2100 Memorial. The management company, San Antonio-based Lynd, delivered the residents a five-day eviction notice early last month, saying the flood water rendered the electrical and fire control systems unsafe.
Several of the residents protested, even speaking at the public session of the Houston City Council meeting. They say they don’t understand why the issues can’t just be fixed instead of everyone having to leave.
Sheila Henderson, member of the newly formed group "Seniors Stand United," said a lot of the issues existed before Harvey, "and they completely ignored doing anything about it, so if we lived with it before the hurricane and disaster, then we can live with it now. Just fix it."
In an email to News 88.7, the Houston Housing Authority said it is not accepting rent for October and that "a significant amount of seniors" have moved out. It also said current residents will get preference once the building is deemed safe.
HHA has also provided a list of apartments for residents, but they say many of them are full or too far away.
Lone Star Legal Aid has filed a lawsuit on behalf of some of the residents to keep the Housing Authority from evicting them.
The next court date is scheduled for Oct. 12.