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Lawmaker helps RRHA resident who was asked to pay $200 to move, despite ‘deplorable conditions’

Posted at 6:10 PM, Aug 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-07 18:36:20-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Video of shower water raining down on Jacqueline McQuinn’s kitchen is hard to forget. So are images of a roach infestation in her RRHA apartment.

On Tuesday, Jacqueline showed CBS 6 Problem Solvers what she calls “deplorable conditions” inside her Afton Avenue apartment.

She says the conditions were so bad, she couldn't keep food in her refrigerator, didn't feel comfortable staying there for months and had to throw out furniture and clothing.

“I have to get a whole living room set because it molded my couches. I am starting from scratch,” said Jacqueline.

Jacqueline McQuinn

Jacqueline's story caught the attention of Del. Delores McQuinn (D-Richmond), who's concerned about the condition of Jacqueline’s RRHA building.

Now, she wants to know more about how the agency is addressing similar living conditions throughout all their properties.

“I do think it's something we need to get better control over,” said the state lawmaker. “Do an assessment and see exactly what is going on in these various places that people are living in. So, we can make right some things that appear to be very wrong.”

CBS 6 Problem Solvers shared pictures and videos with Charles Williams at RRHA.

After seeing water streaming from the unit, he agreed the building wasn't habitable and said all tenants would be moved out by Friday.

“It's good to have a voice and for somebody to speak up. The reason everybody is being moved out of this apartment is because I spoke up,” Jacqueline said.

Within hours Jacqueline was relocated to a hotel.

It was relief at last, for a few moments.

Jacqueline says she was shocked when she was asked to pay a $200 deposit to move into another apartment.

“How dare we expect her to now pay after she’s been dealing with this situation for six months,” said Delores McQuinn. “I am confident that the $200 that was asked of her – that she does not have to follow through with that.”

Delores McQuinn

CBS 6 found out Delegate McQuinn spoke to RRHA officials. And she was right.

The RRHA executive team decided to waive the $200 deposit since what happened wasn't her fault. The items that she was able to salvage have now been moved to her new apartment.

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