Tenants demonstrate on the street in front of Ocean Village after security guards ordered reporters off the premises. Led by Ed Williams of the local NAACP and tenant leaders, a number of residents of the Ocean Village complex on Beach 57 Street came out to protest conditions and its management on Friday afternoon.
“Take a look at the garbage, the filth around you,” said tenant activist Bobbi Blair, who has been living in Ocean Village since 1977, “the conditions here are very serious, and not just in terms of the electrical blackout. The conditions have been bad here for 20 years.”
Part of the 11-building complex.
As Blair spoke, two Ocean Village security guards told reporters from The Wave and New York 1 News that they had no business on the complex grounds, even as guests of a tenant. The guards firmly pushed reporters towards the street.
Once on the street, Blair said that management continually says they will alleviate the conditions, but nothing is ever done.
“There is an elevator that was burned with a worker in it last year,” she said. “It has never been repaired.”
An emergency generator provides power to a building at Ocean Village. An Ocean Village spokesperson says the generators were brought in two weeks ago by management and that all of the buildings were back on line by Monday. “We have blackouts every few months, the elevators are continually going out, and management refuses to speak with us,” she added.
“This protest is small, but it is going to grow,” she promised. “We are going to be in their face every week and they will have to start listening to us.”
|Dawn Coutrier-Carr in her wheelchair is interviewed by Channel 1 News. Behind her is Ed Williams, the head of the local NAACP and Congressman Gregory Meeks’ executive assistant. Both Meeks and City Councilman James Sanders have been helping tenants during the long blackout.Two security officers ordered reporters off the grounds and then stayed around to make sure they did not reenter the complex. A spokesperson for management later apologized to The Wave saying they had no authorization to stop reporters from coming on complex grounds.|