Parents plead for handicap accessible home

Bronx parents are pleading for handicapped housing to accommodate their teenage son.

Eileen Albino says her 13-year-old, Ismael, has to be carried up and down four flights of stairs every day just so he can go to school. Ismael has muscular dystrophy, which means that he needs help with all his daily activities.

Albino has been on the NYCHA waiting list for a handicap accessible apartment for the past two years, but doesn't know how much longer they can wait. She says she has been told that her case is not an emergency.

Albino says she initially chose her current building because the landlord promised her the ground floor, but put her on the fourth floor at the last minute. She's hoping that soon they can move into a first-floor apartment big enough for her son's wheelchair.

News 12 spoke to a lawyer for the Urban Justice Center who says Albino can file a discrimination claim against her landlord. He adds that when it comes to NYCHA, however, the problem is bigger because there is a shortage of apartments and a long wait list.

NYCHA said in a statement that there are more than 33,000 families with mobility issues on the wait list for handicapped accessible apartments. NYCHA officials insist that they understand the enormity of the challenge and the need for more housing options.

The say the city housing authority's transfer options make sure that all tenants have the same fair access to housing that meets their specific needs.

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