SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Tlingit & Haida Housing in Hydaburg
By Jennifer Mooney


September 29, 2007
Saturday AM

I must say, I am truly disgusted with the treatment that we get in Hydaburg from Tlingit & Haida Regional Housing Authority. I am writing today to get some frustration off my chest. So, forgive me if I ramble.

My irritation with T&H started back in the winter of 2004 when I applied for an apartment in Hydaburg. It took 4 months and many phone calls and letters before I was allowed to move in. I had problems with their staff being rude right from the start. It was almost as if they didn't want me or anyone else to live in the building. I lived there for 15 months and paid my rent on time every month. The building manager had a problem with me and he did everything he could to see that I get evicted. He got his way in July 2006. I was given 15 days to move out and find alternate housing. If you know anything about Hydaburg, you know there is not a whole lot of housing opportunity here. Aside from buying property, which is hard to come by for a reasonable price, and building your own home, there isn't a lot of other options.

T&H has a 12 unit apartment building and there are only 5 occupants living there. It's not that people don't want to live there. Some people actually NEED to live there, but they are denied by T&H for many reasons. The one that irritates me the most, you can't live there with a child over 2. So, where does that leave us young adults, who are just starting our families? It leave us homeless, that's where! I was one of the lucky few to find alternate housing in Hydaburg.

There are people in this community, who are single, that live 3 bedroom T&H houses; then there are houses that are over-capacitated and have 8 or more people living in the same amount of space. This just doesn't seem right to me. Us young adults, with children, are left to fend for ourselves, while single people live nicely in a big 3 bedroom house.

Yes, I know these people have been living in these houses for years and paying to own them, but with a housing shortage I don't think it's fair. Shouldn't the apartment building be used for these single people? This would free up some housing and would greatly help families who really need a home.

T&H's website states that they "offer a wider variety of of housing opportunities for all Southeast Alaskans." They provide a list of services and one of them is transitional, temporary emergency housing. They currently are not doing this in Hydaburg.

If someone needed emergency housing, would they have to wait 4 months, or longer, to get into the T&H apartments? I would really like to see them provide us with the same opportunities as other communities in SE. Their building in Hydaburg can be put to way better use, if you ask me.

Jennifer Mooney,
Frusturated, Single Mother with nowhere to live
Hydaburg, AK

About: " Single monther & young adult trying to make a living & find housing in Hydaburg."

Received September 27, 2007 - Published September 29, 2007



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Ketchikan, Alaska