(WASHINGTON) — Mold. Lead paint. Vermin.
These are among the conditions described by the families of U.S. service members in a new survey released Tuesday about privatized military housing.
On Wednesday, military families head to Capitol Hill to testify before senators about their experiences.
The non-profit group Military Family Advisory Network fielded an online questionnaire from Jan. 30 to Feb. 6 for individuals currently living in privatized military housing or had within the past three years.
More than 16,750 individuals from 46 states responded, with more than half saying they would characterize their experience with privatized military housing as “negative” or “very negative.”
“Military families are living in dangerous situations with reports of the existence of black mold, lead paint, faulty wiring, poor water quality, pesticides, and a wide variety of vermin, insects, and other animals (e.g., bats, skunks, and squirrels) in their homes,” MFAN wrote in its preliminary research report to the Senate Armed Services Joint Subcommittee on Personnel, Readiness, and Management Support.
The report added that “families report illnesses with life-long implications caused by poor housing conditions” and requests for remediation are “often denied or ignored.”
In addition to family members, the presidents of five of the top private military housing companies, as well as Department of Defense officials, are scheduled to testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday.
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