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Minority Families Claim They're Being Evicted To Make Room For Non-Latinos

(CBS) -- Multiple families face eviction from their Albany Park – they say because they are Latino.

CBS 2's Jim Williams reports.

Jose Garcia wonders where he, his wife and young children will live next.

"It's very difficult for us to try to find a place in a month, because we're in the middle of winter. It's not as easy to move this time of year," he says.

With little warning from the landlord, he says, 19 families -- 80 people altogether, in the 4500 block of North Christiana -- were told in January they had one month to leave.

"We don't have a lease, but we think it's unjust that they're evicting us," Garcia says, "when we've lived in this community and in this building for several years."

The tenants say they're being forced out because they're Latino.

Chad Baker is their attorney and predicts the building units will be leased to "mostly non-Latino folks."

Baker claims it's happened at other apartments in the area owned by the Silver Property Group.

"The charge we are forcing the tenants out of their homes because they are Latino is simply false," said Ron D. Abrams, of the Silver Property Group. "This is a pure business decision to renovate a recently purchased building."

"None of the tenants have leases and are living there on a month-to-month tenancy. Applicable laws provide for termination of the tenancy with a minimum of one full month notice," Abrams added.

Abrams said Silver Property offered to discuss the situation with the tenants individually, but "no one has contacted us."

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