I have been acknowledged by other tenants for knowing my rights. Not a bad thing to have said to my face. They can say whatever the heck they want behind my back.
You may be wondering what that has to do with the units being used by capital project construction contractors. (The ones doing the major work on TCHC sites like replacing the ancient copper water pipes throughout my building.) Let me explain.
Based on a report submitted yesterday at TCHC's Board of Directors meeting there are 40 units across the TCHC portfolio that are being used for "capital deployment". One of them just so happens to be across the hall from me. Oops, their bad.
Within weeks I sent an email to Toronto Public Health regarding two problems arising from this whole set up.
Number one. They are cutting copper piping (enough for the whole building over the time frame of about six months). At first I was freaked out by the noise. Then one day it sounded like they were cutting it right in my living room. I looked out my peep hole. That's when I noticed they were cutting the copper piping with the door open. The workers themselves were walking in and out with light weight masks on. My thoughts quickly went to - If it's that dangerous where's my mask? Why didn't they install proper ventilation?
Number two. One morning I woke up and I couldn't breathe. In a panic I hand to calm down enough to remind myself to inhale. My throat was constricted and air couldn't pass through. Once it did I smelled cigarette smoke. That didn't exactly calm me down. It was strong enough that again I thought someone was in my living room. More than likely a few someone's smoking some cheap ass cigarettes. (The cheaper they are, the harsher they are.) When I got out of bed I opened my bedroom door. No one there. Peaked out my peephole. What do you know? The door to the unit across the hall, the one that the contractors are using, was wide open. One more reason to ensure that they had proper ventilation. I don't know anything for sure about copper metals poisoning but I do know about the dangers of second hand smoke. So do most other people.
This morning I woke up to the following -"You don't cut unless I say you can cut. That goes for you, you, you, and you." There must have been some grumbling or dirty looks from the workers because that was followed up with "You don't follow normal fucking rules ... You don't like it you can go home" Obviously, a supervisor was on site.
Just in case there are any doubts a few moments later I heard the outraged security guard that was hired by the construction company - "What the hell man. Where are we supposed to smoke?" Honestly, I don't care where you smoke. As long as it's outside that nine metre radius of every entrance to this building and not in the unit across the hall from me with the door wide open. That's the good thing about this being a public building. There are bi-laws that protect us that would not apply to private residences. As a security guard working alongside subcontractors on TCHC property she should have known that.
This set of contractors is expected to remain on site until at least December. The cold weather is coming. She (the security guard) should just quit. Smoking that is.
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