Angry tenants stage sit-in at Espada's Albany office
Protesters demonstrate outside Senate Majority Leader Pedro Espada Jr.'s office. (Photo: AP)
Dozens of city tenants fed-up with state Senate Majority Pedro Espada stormed his Albany office Tuesday afternoon, holding a sit-in all across the embattled politician’s suite.
“You had a whole bunch of suits asking us to leave. We didn’t. We sat on the floor. We sat on his desk and the floor,” said Joseph Ferdinand, 57, a Bronx constituent of Espada’s.
Housing groups and unions affiliated with the coalition Real Rent Reform want Espada removed from his chairmanship on the Senate housing committee, accusing him of being in bed with landlords on his “rent freeze bill” because they claim the legislation doesn’t go far enough in protecting low-income tenants.
Protesters were armed with a big fake check from Espada to “Landlord lobbyists,” and tacked a mock eviction notice on his door.
The demonstrators were ushered into the hall, where a staffer told them that the senator would not be talking to them about rent regulations, according to Ferdinand.
“It was a total insult,” Ferdinand said.
Espada’s office did not return a request for comment Tuesday.
Last week, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo filed a civil suit against Espada for allegedly steering millions of dollars from a Bronx health clinic the senator founded to vacations, meals and housing.