Parents upset about the judge’s decision.
Indiana University (IU) parents with children negatively affected by moldy dorms and dormitories filed a lawsuit against the school two years ago alleging that officials had known about moldy dormitory conditions for years, the problem however not fixed. In 2020, a judge granted class action complaint status, claiming the IU “breached its contract by placing substandard housing orders to thousands of students who lived in dormitories where mold was found.”
Court documents in the case state: “Officials had been aware of the festival problem since at least 2005 when the university released a report describing the extent of the mold problems on campus.” Emergency “, the lawsuit goes on to say:” Visible mold was found in 80% of the dormitories inspected. “IU officials agreed that only a complete renovation of the halls would remove the mold.
Photo by Patrick Hendry on Unsplash
In April 2019, the State Budget Committee approved Indiana University’s $ 56 million plan to replace heating, ventilation, and cooling systems in the Foster and McNutt dormitories. These will be renovated in 2020 and will feature more than 2,000 beds that were unavailable during that time and many students living off campus.
Now the court has ruled in favor of the Indiana Tort Claims Act, which stipulates that the school is only liable for $ 5 million in damages. The IU had made over $ 7 million in dues to the students that it had already paid out. v Foster and McNutt students received $ 3,000 apiece, and Teter students received compensation for property and health damages. The families are not happy with the verdict and the lawyers said they are considering their next steps.
Ann Martinez, mother of a sick student, said the verdict made her feel that her daughter’s experience was “invalid and unimportant”. She also said that the process they went through to get help for their students “has exposed gaping gaps in protection legislation at the state and national levels.” There really aren’t any applicable laws designed to effectively protect students living in university apartments from the effects of mold or substandard conditions. “
Steve Wilson, father of a student who lived in Teter, said the experience caused his son to have irreparable fear. Wilson stated, “They are very vulnerable when they leave the house, many of them for the first time in a long time, trying to find their way through society and then essentially just being thrown aside. For me, that was the greatest element of disrespect. “He added,” All parents don’t want special treatment, they just want the university to deliver on what they promised – provide our children with a clean environment for them to go to school and thrive, and you should be there to to continue with the path and we, who spoke personally for my family, felt none of it. “
Late last month, the university also revealed a case of mold in Foster, but said it was “unrelated to the 2018-2019 mold problem”.
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