A nonverbal, developmentally disabled woman faces eviction because the building’s owner won’t add her sister to her lease, a new lawsuit alleges.
Blanca Martinez has lived in her East Harlem apartment, located on E. 107th St. and Lexington Ave., for 28 years.
Martinez, 58, has cerebral palsy, and doctors have also diagnosed her with “moderate mental deficiency.”
“She is mostly nonverbal, and generally points or nods in response to questions,” according to her Manhattan Federal Court lawsuit, filed on May 26th.
Because of Martinez’s condition, she needs a full-time caretaker to help her bathe, dress and use the restroom. Her parents took care of her for many years and held the lease on the apartment where she lives.
But in July 2010, her father, Marcos, died and her mother, Maria, developed Alzheimer’s in 2014 — requiring her sister, Thelma, to care for both of them, court papers state.
“Wherever I go, my sister comes with me,” Thelma Martinez told the Daily News in an exclusive interview. “I never let her out of my sight.”
Following the Alzheimer’s diagnosis, Martinez, 57, asked the building’s management, Manhattan North Management Co., to add her to the lease.