Massachusetts

Charter School's Purchase Leaves Malden Tenants Short Notice to Leave Their Homes

One family that has rented their apartment in Malden, Massachusetts, for 15 years received a notice in November that they must vacate by Dec. 31 after the Mystic Valley Regional Charter School purchased a block with plans to use the property in an expansion project

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Tenants in Malden say they’ve been given little notice to find a new place to stay.

Longtime tenants in Malden, Massachusetts, have just learned they will soon have to leave their homes.

Tatiane de Oliveira has lived in her Malden apartment building for 15 years.
Now, she and her family have been told their lease will be no good at the end of the year.

"What they are doing is not what we do to other human beings," said the wife and mother of two.

She, along with her neighbors living in the apartments, received notice in November telling them to vacate by Dec. 31.

"I got desperate," she said.

The nearby Mystic Valley Regional Charter School has purchased the block in Malden's Maplewood Square, with plans to use the property for an expansion project down the road.

Below the apartments, ground-level businesses are also impacted, but they've been given until the Spring of 2023 to find a new place to set up shop.

"Many of these businesses, they're just having a tough time surviving through COVID, let alone worrying that someone is going to kick them out," said Malden City Councilor Stephen Winslow.

In a statement, the school says it's working with the city "in hopes that we can arrive at a favorable solution."

Laura Rosi, who runs the Housing Families organization in Malden, says Tatiane and her neighbors need more time to figure out a plan.

"They were given notice that they have to be out by the end of the year, but there's a whole legal process that the landlord's going to have to follow to get people out," said Rosi.

Families are trying to figure out if they want to fight this in court, and they're also hoping to negotiate an extension with the school.

"It's almost impossible, not even just to find a new place, but to raise the money to go to a new place," said de Oliveira.