Disabled South Bay residents stuck after elevator stops working at supportive housing facility

Residents also said they concerns with on-site security.

Zach Fuentes Image
Wednesday, February 22, 2023
South Bay residents stuck after elevator down at housing facility
Tenants at a Milpitas supportive housing site say a broken elevator is keeping disabled residents stuck in their building's second and third floors.

MILPITAS, Calif. (KGO) -- Tenants at a South Bay supportive housing site say a broken elevator is keeping disabled residents stuck in their building's second and third floors.

The out of order elevator is inside Hillview Court Apartments in Milpitas.

Converted in 2020 from a former hotel, it's now a supportive housing site providing permanent housing to those experiencing homelessness.

"We absolutely need more supportive housing," said resident Lisa Reeve, "But we need right supportive housing."

VIDEO: Elderly, disabled SF residents say they've been without a working elevator for 3.5 weeks

Elderly and disabled residents living in HomeRise affordable housing in San Francisco has been without a working elevator for three and a half weeks.

Reeve, a resident of the apartments and leader of a forming tenants association there, says the conditions they're living under aren't right.

Starting with the elevator.

"It goes down at least once a week," Reeve said, "We have handicapped disabled, whether they're chair bound or because of other physical disabilities, can't get up and down the stairs easily."

Though the residents say food has been brought to those stranded, they still need to be able to come and go for things like doctor's appointments.

"We had one lady who was wheelchair bound, who absolutely had to go to this doctor's appointment and tried to get down the stairs and fell, Reeve said.

MORE: Concertgoers stuck on another SF elevator overdue for state safety inspection

The issue of broken elevators and state inspections has been one ABC7's I-Team has been tracking in the Bay Area.

A California Department of Industrial Relations Spokesperson telling the team: "Elevators are required to be properly serviced and maintained by the building owner and their certified elevator maintenance company, even when operating with expired permits."

"This has been going on for months, I can say at least eight months," said Reeve. "They blame it on the residents and it's not the residents."

Reeve and other residents say the issues, though, go beyond the broken elevator in addition to other building safety concerns and access to resources, they have concerns with on-site security.

"People are afraid to come out of their rooms," she said, "I don't leave my room without an open knife."

MORE: Woman stuck in SF elevator for 1 hour discovers outdated safety inspection

ABC7 reached out to Jamboree Housing Corporation who received State Project Homekey funds secured by Santa Clara County to develop and own the property.

In a statement, Jamboree said:

"We have been in regular communication with residents to address any issues and concerns as they are brought to our attention. The team ensures that equipment breakdowns are addressed immediately, and safety and security concerns are handled according to our established policies and procedures."

ABC7 also reached out to Santa Clara County and has not heard back.

For now, residents say that their talks with county officials have been going well but say they need help now and won't stand down until they get it.

"This is this is our home," Reeve said, "I want to feel safe in my home."

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