Rebecca Towers tenants in Hamilton detail disrepair they say contributed to COVID-19 outbreak

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Published June 29, 2021 at 12:34 am

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Tenants of Rebecca Towers, the Hamilton apartment tower that had a COVID-19 outbreak last month, are continuing to call out their landlord.

On Monday, Rebecca Towers residents held a rally outside of the building at 235 Rebecca St., and also shared photos on social media that document a backlog of repair requests in the 17-storey building. The apartment tower is owned by Medallion Corp., which is based in Toronto.

The residents endured a 24-day COVID-19 outbreak in May. There were 110 reported cases and one death. The building had only one working elevator for several months. The tenants also say there are several clogged vents in the building, which might have reduced airflow and contributed to the the outbreak.

The tenants have said they want repairs completed and want Medallion Corp. to cancel a proposed above-guideline rent increase.

At the rally, residents stated that most of their repair requests predate provincial lockdown orders that began in March 2020 after. One top-floor resident, Lloyd Smith, said he had been waiting since November 2017 to have his ceiling repaired. They said that Medallion accepted about 50 repair requests after the rally.

Following the outbreak at Rebecca Towers and two other downtown Hamilton apartment complexes in May, Hamilton’s board of health has instructed city staff to check whether COVID-19 related requirements are being followed in apartment buildings around the city.

The board’s next meeting is scheduled for early July.

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