Access-a-Ride dispatchers in Long Island City say their Northern Blvd. bed bugs have been found in their office since the summer of 2008, and NYC Transit is only now taking action, The New York Daily News reports today. (Access-a-Ride is a transportation van service for the disabled.)
A bed bug sniffing dog team found bed bugs on the 7th and 8th floors of the building on Friday.
“I hope it will force some pressure for them to do something,” said John Wau, 48, who showed pinprick-sized scars along his right arm that he said came from numerous bedbug bites.”They keep telling us not to worry, that everything is okay,” said Wau, a customer service representative. “But they’re not doing anything about it.”
Since the bedbugs were detected Friday on the seventh and eighth floors of the facility – where more than 700 dispatchers work for the firm – sections have been taped off to keep employees away from the infested areas and several items were removed, workers said.
Officials from NYC Transit, which operates Access-A-Ride, said the problem is being addressed.
“One of the recommendations to be implemented within the next two days will be the steam-cleaning of carpets, cubicles and office chairs of the call centers,” said spokesman Charles Seaton.
Note: taping off specific areas will keep employees from an area, but will not keep bed bugs from coming to the employees.
The article features an interview with one worker, Idalia Perez, who says she brought bed bugs from work home to her Bronx apartment in August 2008; she says she lost thousands of dollars of furniture due to the infestation, and received no support from her employer.
When hundreds of workers may have been exposed to bed bugs over more than a year’s time, you have to wonder how many people in New York may have gotten their bed bugs from this one prolonged bed bug infestation.