Tenants say they're living with cockroaches and ants in Dartmouth building

Cockroaches and ants have become unwanted roommates for tenants at a Dartmouth apartment building, who protested Friday about conditions they say include water leaks and faulty elevators.

'It's very difficult, especially when you're on low income and you're supposed to be in affordable housing'

Sarah Byrne has problems with mobility and can end up trapped in her apartment for days when the elevator in her apartment breaks down. (Ross Andersen/CBC)

Cockroaches and ants have become unwanted roommates for tenants at a Dartmouth apartment building, who protested Friday about conditions they say include water leaks and faulty elevators.

Armed with placards more than a dozen tenants took to the street outside 15 Kennedy Dr.  to call on the building's owners to fix the problems.    

Residents said management's lack of respect, poor communication and little to no help with repairs gave them no choice but to demonstrate.

The apartment on 15 Kennedy Dr. in Dartmouth is run by the management company MetCap. (Steven Berry/CBC)

"It's very difficult, especially when you're on low income and you're supposed to be in affordable housing, just that alone is stressful enough," said building resident Sarah Byrne.

Byrne suffers from osteoarthritis and uses a walker for assisted mobility. She said when elevators break down — sometimes for days — she is trapped in her eighth-floor apartment.

"It makes it harder for someone with a disability to cope and live a peaceful life," said Byrne. 

More than a dozen people gathered outside the apartment building on 15 Kennedy Dr. in Dartmouth to protest their living conditions. (Ross Andersen/CBC)

The Toronto-based management company MetCap is in charge of the apartment building. MetCap disputes the claims of poor living conditions in the building.

"We have a strong team and a very strong maintenance program in place to service the needs of our residents," MetCap spokesperson Michael Guyette said in an email.

Leanne Langille said the company that manages the apartment building at 15 Kennedy Dr. ignores its tenants. (Stephen Berry/CBC )

Guyette said pest issues are aggressively contained and there is a 24-hour helpline for residents to officially file any complaints to management office.

Still, tenants say they're being ignored by the company. 

"MetCap treats their tenants like we're nobody," said building resident Leanne Langille. "If we have a problem they don't really listen. They say they'll do something and they don't."

About the Author

Ross Andersen

Associate Producer

Ross Andersen in an associate producer for current affairs in Halifax. He previously studied journalism at Sheridan College and University of King's College.