DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – As temperatures climb above 100 degrees, a Dallas World War II veteran is concerned about his health and safety.
Robert Shafer, Sr. said despite paying rent on time at his retirement community, he’s been without working A/C for three months.
“I think it’s disgraceful,” the 99-year-old Shafer, Sr. said. “I spent my life in construction and I can almost build a whole new building in the period of time this air-conditioning has been out.”
His son has been trying to get him some help.
“I tried to meet with the staff here, the executive director, to get it fixed when it was cooler outside, but they did literally nothing,” Robert Shafer, Jr. said.
Now he feels like he’s getting the runaround.
“First, they said they were negotiating,” Shafer, Jr. said. “They had to get three bids from different vendors to come fix the air conditioner. Then they said we’re waiting on parts. That’s their pat answer and then every time he calls down to the front desk, all he can get is we’re working on it or we’re waiting on parts.”
Shafer, Jr. said just today, a portable unit was installed in the apartment. However, as it got hotter outside the CBS 11 crew watched as the thermometer still continued to climb, reaching over 90 degrees.
“That’s unlivable,” Shafer, Jr. said. “That’s unlivable.”
CBS 11 tried to speak with Emerson on Harvest Hill employees to see what’s being done and asked to be put in touch with management but were told they won’t be commenting at this time.
Legal experts are weighing in on what you can do if you find yourself in a similar situation.
“You should do a repaired remedy request and you should do it in writing because that triggers the property code, the legal rights, that you have to bring them to court,” Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas Supervising Attorney Farwah Raza said.
She said you’ll want to do this through certified mail so you have proof and be sure to say the situation is affecting your health and safety.
“You know if you are a person who is disabled you should also be asking for reasonable accommodations under the Fair Housing Act,” Raza added.
Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas said then give the complex time to make the repairs, usually around five days. If there’s no response, you should file a petition in your local justice of the peace court and go from there.
The Shafers are working to figure out their next move.
“There’s not very many of us over here and they just don’t care,” Shafer, Sr. said. “They just don’t care.”