FORT DRUM, N.Y. -- Mold growing on carpet and lining walls in hundreds of photos and videos sent to Spectrum News purports to show substandard housing conditions inside of apartment complexes on Fort Drum.
Residents say they have called maintenance and filed several complaints, only to have the mold issue countered with dehumidifiers and chemical bathroom cleaners.
"All they do is spray Tilex, and then they'll even give you a bottle if it comes back. If it comes back!" exclaimed Ciara Gilman, the wife of a Fort Drum soldier.
"Lack of concern as far as helping us and what we can get done – basically, just told us to put a rug over it and open the window," said the family member of a soldier who asked us to keep their identity secret.
Lease Lend, the company who owns Fort Drum Mountain Community Homes, sent this statement:
"Fort Drum Mountain Community Homes is fully committed to the safety and well-being of all our residents. We investigate all resident concerns and take any health or safety items seriously. If residents have specific concerns, they are encouraged to reach out to their community office or the 24/7 maintenance line at (315) 955-6650."
Gilman was able to break her lease recently because of her mother's chemotherapy treatment, but other families sent along photos documenting the same issues. They said they're forced to deal with the mold conditions until their lease is up to avoid costly penalties.
For Gilman, it comes down to showing respect and not lip service.
"They continuously tell us, thank you for your service and you know, we really appreciate you, but it doesn't feel like it when the houses that we're being put in are crumbling," Gilman said.
Rep. Elise Stefanik responded to the news saying her office reached is currently working on a formal inquiry with the Department of Defense. Her office says they will also like to open constituent casework on this issue. She says she encourages other families who have been affected to contact her Watertown Office.