Residents Sue Coney Island Adult Home for Bed Bug Infestation and Shoddy Conditions

NYDailyNews.com
Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Residents at a Coney Island adult home are suing over shoddy conditions - including a three- year bedbug infestation.

The Surf Manor Adult Home on Surf Ave. was slapped with a class action lawsuit last Tuesday by roughly 200 residents who claim their rooms are crawling with bedbugs.

They also blame home officials for the spread of scabies, broken elevators, spotty heat and hot water, mold growth, and nasty treatment by staff during that time.

"We're hoping we can get a permanent change to improve the quality of our lives," said resident Norman Bloomfield.

"We don't have to live with these daily problems. We want to live more humanely."

The lawsuit also mentions dirty linens that were left in hallways and stairwells; and leaky ceilings that were never repaired.

Lawyers for the residents said administrators were slow to fumigate the building, causing the infestation to repeatedly resurface.

A new company was also hired by administrators to keep watch over the housekeeping staff and porters while they fixed the problems, but the conditiopns persist, according to the suit.

"The actions they've taken have been wholesale inadequate," said lawyer Shelly Weizman.

"It's makeshift temporary solutions that don't get to the root of the problem."

Lawyers for the adult home - who serves the elderly and the disabled - said administrators took every step to fix the bedbug infestation.

"The allegations in this lawsuit are not true and they will be vigorously contested," saidhome lawyer Jeff Sherrin.

"It's a good, clean facility. They are committed to the welfare of their residents and they continue to monitor and deal with any bedbug issues that arise."

But fed up residents said they are sick of the building's conditions.

"It's uncomfortable. You're trying to sleep and the bedbugs are biting you," said James Riddles, 51..

Vonceile Morgan, 52, said that when she first moved into the adult home eight months ago, her room was crawling with bedbugs.

Morgan was bitten so badly she was taken to Coney Island Hospital.

"I'm devastated. I feel like I'm being treated less than a human being," said Morgan.

"I want to see conditions improved here not just for me but for all the residents here."