Building with bed bugs hosts polling station this week

by nobugsonme on October 31, 2008 · 4 comments

in bed bug epidemic, bed bug treatment, bed bugs, kentucky, lexington, spread of bed bugs

Remember the Ballard Griffith senior apartment complex in Lexington, Kentucky?  Back in September, we were told more than a hundred seniors there were living in apartments infested with bed bugs.

Nearly two months later, the building is still infested.

And on Tuesday, 600 people (including 400 who don’t live in the complex) will be voting there.  According to WKYT:

Now with the towers becoming a polling place on Election Day, the Fayette County Clerk sent letters to those expected to vote at the site.

The letters say the library inside the apartment complex, where votes will be cast, has been sprayed with chemicals and the carpets have been steamed as a precaution.

It also says that no bed bugs have been found in the library, these steps are simply preventative.

Since bed bugs can be carried on people’s clothing and in bags and other items, bed bugs can conceivably be transmitted to others anywhere.

It does not sound like this room is known to be infested, and I think the treatment was a good idea.  I am glad letters were sent out about this, and also hope that people will not skip voting in such an important election.

Personally, I would go to the polls under such circumstances, but I also probably would not sit down in the polling place, nor would I put down a bag or coat!

Keep in mind, neighbors may be in more danger of spreading or catching bed bugs on local public transportation, in stores and restaurants, and other local hangouts.  Especially if such places are not receiving treatment.

The fact that the library was being treated before it became a polling place raised some questions amongst residents of the same building suffering from bed bug bites in their homes:

Those living with the bugs, however, can’t help but wonder why the extermination is happening just for the election when they are living with the pests everyday.

And that is a very good question.

You can read the full story from WKYT, or watch the video here.

1 LJ November 1, 2008 at 3:02 pm

A similar situation happened here in Toronto on voting day. The building near Eglinton West subway station, made somewhat infamous by W5 and Toronto Star reports of bed bugs was also used as a polling station during the federal election. However, the largely empty common room used for voting has otherwise not been used at all recently, so risk was probably quite minimal.

2 parakeets November 3, 2008 at 12:14 pm

The polling place where I am going to vote is a large senior housing complex that was treated for bedbugs.

3 Felicia July 12, 2010 at 11:13 am

I’m in Fort Lauderdale, FL I live in a 10 story high building I’ve lived here a year. My unit is infested with bedbugs and was told by an pest control that if i have bedbugs the hold building does. He saids that some people doesn’t know they have bedbugs and will mistaking their bites as fleas or mosquitos bites and with treat their unit as if it did have that but not knowing its bedbugs. I noted that I see them how come they don’t. He say bedbugs are good hider and they only mostly come out at night when everyone is asleep so they wouldn’t know. I stated that i told the building maintenance manager who is in fact in charge of the renter problems and claims. He sent in their contract pest control man he treat the problem two times when i seen that it was working i did my own little research on bedbugs and found out you can’t treat just one area you have to treat the hold building and i inform the pest control man of that and he stated that he can’t treat the hold building that its a 10 story high building that he can’t treat the building by himself. I guess he informed his boss and his boss informed the maintenance manager the bedbugs are not included in their contract. So the maintenance manager spoke with the owner and they refuse to treat the matter and says we bought them here in which we didn’t this is a high traffic building. I’ve never in my hold life ever seen a bedbug before until i moved here. For them to say we broght them is down right prejudice. So we said it we treat it i’ll self that its coming out of the rent they agree to it but they said we can’t spent over 60 dollars we tried it and it wasn’t successfull. so what can we do?

4 nobugsonme July 13, 2010 at 6:55 pm


What you can do depends in part on where you live. You need to know more about local laws. The Florida PIRG Renter’s Handbook may help. It explains how to file a housing code violation, which may apply to your circumstances.

I am not a lawyer and you may need the advice of a lawyer or local tenants’ advice organization before taking drastic steps like withholding rent, or moving.

Please come to our active user Forums if you want to discuss this further, but remember that we can’t advise about how to proceed.

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