Written by 10:00 am People stories

No Whistleblower Protection from your Landlord

Photo of a leaking pipe.

Recipient Story: Your donations make what seems impossible, possible: a Detroit woman is able to move her family into their new home.

Talika H had a landlord problem.

“I was displaced from my home in August of last year,” Talika told me, before continuing one beat later to correct the record. “Actually, I was evicted.”

She was living in a home with her kids, trying to keep up on all her bills. But the water bills were so high. She thought she knew why: her house was riddled with water leaks. 

“I told the landlord about the leaks. I reported the leaks to the company. But they wouldn’t fix things.” Unfortunately, there is no whistleblower protection from your own landlord. Instead of fixing the problems, Talika’s property management company took the cheaper route: they kicked her and her children out. 

Things quickly went downhill from there. Unable to find a new place to live with an eviction on her record, Talika moved her family into a hotel. But that was even more expensive. And crowded. Two weeks ago, she finally found a place to live. 

But the water company insisted that she pay down her past bill, plus an additional $150 deposit to get her water service switched over to her new address. It was such a significant amount of money that Talika needed to pay! She was so close to having a new home for her family. But she didn’t know how she was going to be able to come up with such a large sum of money for the water bill. 

That’s when the customer service representative from the water company gave her The Human Utility’s contact information. She reached out and got in touch with Marie, our customer service angel. “She was so fast. So prompt,” Talika recalls. 

In short order, Talika applied for help. Marie got in touch with the water department and made the payment. And then Talika and her family moved out of the hotel and into their new home. 

“It was looking impossible for me to get into this home without that payment. I’m so glad you helped me.” 

To our organization and to you, our donors, Talika had one simple message: “You guys have been awesome. Very helpful. Keep up what you guys are doing. You’re a blessing to a lot of people. You’re a blessing for me.”

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Tags: , , , , Last modified: January 27, 2020