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Woman Says She Doesn't Feel Safe In Subsidized Chicago Home, Especially After Chunk Of Ceiling Fell On Son's Head

CHICAGO (CBS) -- With the ceiling cracking and crumbling, a Chicago family living in subsidized housing said they do not feel safe in their own home.

CBS 2's Tara Molina took the family's concerns right to the Chicago Housing Authority. The family has no choice but to stay in the unit, hoping nothing comes crashing down a second time.

Amy Walker said she asked for help for more than three weeks, but hasn't heard anything from CHA. So earlier Wednesday, we started asking.

"This is the plastic they put up to cover it," Walker said. You can smell. It smells a little bit" like sewage.

But that's not the worst of Walker and her family's issues in their unit. What is? The bathroom ceiling collapsed?

"It's been like this since three days ago," Walker said.

She said she has asked for help with a leak in the bathroom for weeks.

On Monday, it turned into more than a leak, when a chunk of the ceiling came down on her son Devonte's head.

"I was mopping the bathroom floor because of the leak, and then I was trying to exit the bathroom and the ceiling just collapsed on me," Devonte said.

Days later, there was still no fix.

"I left several messages to the headquarters downtown," Walker said. "No one wants to talk."

So Walker reached out to us.

"For my son to have to go through that?" Walker said. "It's a problem that could have been avoided time and time again, and yet no one did anything about it."

She told Molina she feels like she's being treated differently because she lives in subsidized housing, claiming she hasn't heard a word from the Chicago Housing Authority.

"My house smell like sewage. I'm confined to one room," Walker said. "It's very, very hard living in there."

So we reached out, quickly learning the CHA is not in charge of repairs and maintenance at the development where Walker lives.

"This is a mixed-income community run by Michaels Development. In other words, CHA provides subsidy for renters living there – such as this unit – but does not own and operate the building," the CHA said.

We reached out to Michaels Development with Walker's claims, and a spokeswoman said:

"Our maintenance crew was notified of Ms. Walker's leak on Friday. We have since found the source of the leak and have made the needed repairs. Once the drywall has dried we can repair and repaint the ceiling. She has full use of the bathroom/bathtub. We value her tenancy and apologize for any inconvenience as we work through completion."

We will check back with Walker to make sure those repairs happen.

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