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PODCAST: One Woman's Crusade Against Harlem's Bad Landlords

By Gwynne Hogan | July 8, 2016 7:10am | Updated on July 10, 2016 2:20pm
 Elsia Vasquez, a tenant advocate, helps renters organize associations so they can fight for repairs.
Elsia Vasquez, a tenant advocate, helps renters organize associations so they can fight for repairs.
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DNAinfo/Gustavo Solis

HARLEM — Each episode of This is New York brings you a conversation with DNAinfo New York reporters, followed by a story central to their beats.

In this episode we take you to Harlem with former DNAinfo reporter Gustavo Solis, who'll bring you up to speed on some of the area's most pressing issues.

Then we'll spend time with Elsia Vasquez, a tenant advocate with an organization called Pa'Lante Harlem. She's helped renters fight back against delinquent landlords who wage a tactical war against regulated and rent-controlled tenants.

Vasquez, who grew up in Harlem, wasn't always a feisty neighborhood activist. She used to have a Wall Street job training financial advisers. But when conditions in her own rent-stabilized building became appalling, helping her neighbors fight to protect their homes because her passion.

Vasquez tells us how she came to fight for renters across the city.