Houston, TX – After years of flooded apartments and dangerous and unsanitary living conditions, current and displaced tenants of Arbor Court Apartments filed suit in federal court on July 17, 2018, against the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the owners of Arbor Court Apartments, Arbor Court, LTD. The low-income plaintiffs are seeking relief from the years of substandard and dangerous housing conditions alleging that HUD has violated the law by not providing plaintiffs with decent, safe and sanitary housing and allowing Arbor Court to continue years of neglect of its property to the harm of the plaintiffs.  They are represented by Lone Star Legal Aid attorneys Kimberly Brown Myles, Velimir Rasic, and Martha Orozco as well as nationally renowned housing lawyers, Michael Daniel and Laura Beshara of the law firm of Daniel and Beshara, P.C.

The property, built in the Greens Bayou floodway, is infested with mold, insects and other vermin and is so structurally unsound it has been red tagged by the City of Houston Fire Marshall. The complex is in the middle of a community rampant with crime where plaintiffs have observed assaults and have to protect their children from frequent gunfire.

The complaint alleges HUD has failed to terminate the contract with Arbor Court and provide tenants with housing vouchers to move to safer communities with decent housing. Plaintiffs’ assert that HUD’s failure to terminate the contract, forcing the them to remain in a high crime, high poverty, minority concentrated area perpetuates racial segregation and racial discrimination in clear violation of the Fair Housing Act and the U.S. Constitution.

The lawsuit seeks to end Arbor Court’s involvement in HUD’s Project-Based Rental Assistance Program and provide tenants with Housing Choice Vouchers and the assistance necessary to obtain affordable decent, safe and sanitary housing in neighborhoods without substandard housing.

Review a copy of the filed petition here.

Lone Star Legal Aid is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit law firm focused on advocacy on behalf of low-income and underserved populations. Lone Star Legal Aid serves the millions of people at 125% of federal poverty guidelines that reside in 72 counties in the eastern and Gulf Coast regions of Texas, and 4 counties of southwest Arkansas. Lone Star Legal Aid focuses its resources on maintaining, enhancing, and protecting income and economic stability; preserving housing; improving outcomes for children; establishing and sustaining family safety and stability, health and well‐being; and assisting populations with special vulnerabilities, like those who have disabilities, or who are elderly, homeless, or have limited English language skills. To learn more about Lone Star Legal Aid, visit our website at www.lonestarlegal.org.

Media contact: Clarissa Ayala, cayala@lonestarlegal.org.