July 09, 2017

In Cairo, Duckworth Hears Concerns of Alexander County Housing Authority Residents


[CAIRO, IL] - U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth today met with residents of the Elmwood and McBride housing developments to listen to their concerns and discuss her continuing efforts to address the challenges faced by families living in the two housing facilities. Since being sworn in as U.S. Senator in January, Duckworth has monitored the troubling situation in Cairo closely and worked to improve poor living conditions and elevated levels of lead in the water at the two housing complexes. Duckworth also successfully urged the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), on behalf of the tenants, for an extended relocation period of 330 days from 150 days. A photo of the meeting with residents is available here.

"I am deeply troubled by the unacceptable living conditions that the residents of Elmwood and Mcbride have been forced to endure in Cairo," said Duckworth. "They are rightly fed up, dissatisfied and angry with the lack of progress over the years and this hasty relocation being forced upon them. The residents deserve transparency and accountability for the negligent oversight and potentially criminal actions that helped create this preventable crisis. I will continue working to restore hope, pride and prosperity to this historic town."

During her visit to Cairo today, Duckworth also toured several sites throughout the city with local officials and discussed efforts to develop the local economy. A photo of her meeting with local officials is available here. Earlier this year, Duckworth and Senator Durbin sent multiple letters to the HUD Inspector General requesting an update on the investigation of the Alexander County Housing Authority, which has gone on for over a year. She is scheduled to meet with HUD Secretary Ben Carson later this week in Washington.

"In order to create a better future for Cairo, there needs to be a strategy in place to rebuild the economy with infrastructure, business, affordable housing and jobs," said Duckworth.

Duckworth's posts on both the Senate Commerce, Science, & Transportation and Environment & Public Works Committees give her jurisdiction over public transportation and infrastructure projects, and she has committed to using those posts to do what she can to create local jobs and improve the Cairo economy.