Montreal

Cockroaches, bed bugs, mould plague low-income apartments in Montreal's north end

Residents living in low-income apartment units in Montreal's Cartierville are plagued by cockroaches, bed bugs, mould and rodents, according to a new report by the local housing watchdog.

Ahuntsic-Cartierville housing watchdog sounds alarm after conducting survey of residences

The survey of low-income apartment units in Cartierville found 12 per cent had problems with rodent infestations. (CBC News)

Residents living in low-income apartment units in Montreal's Cartierville neighbourhood are plagued by the presence of cockroaches, bed bugs, rodents and mould, according to a new report by the local housing watchdog. 

The social housing committee for the borough of Ahuntsic-Cartierville visited buildings with six or more dwellings to identify problems faced by tenants.

Here is what researchers found:

  • 46 per cent of the 789 households surveyed complained of unsanitary conditions.
  • 81 per cent of those residences had cockroaches.
  • 30 per cent had bed bugs.
  • 16 per cent had mould.
  • 12 per cent had rodents, such as rats and mice.

The report also found that only a minority of residents — 113 households — agreed to take their complaints to the borough level.

Part of the reluctance may be due to problems with the borough complaint process, which is beset by delays, the report said.

Dr. David Kaiser of Montreal's public health department said pest infestations and mould have long-term consequences for the people who live in the units.

"It is well documented, for example, that several respiratory health problems, including asthma, rhinitis and respiratory infections, are associated with the presence of moulds or cockroaches," he said in a statement.

Four out of five low-income units surveyed have cockroach problems. (Jaela Bernstien/CBC)

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