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January 11, 1913

Unwise Tenement-House Legislation

JAMA. 1913;60(2):146. doi:10.1001/jama.1913.04340020054023

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To the Editor:  —Your editorial discussion in last week's issue (p. 52) of tenement legislation prompts me to add these coniderations. Rents are high on Manhattan Island because the demand for space in which to live is beyond the supply. Also the rent is artificially and unnecessarly made still more prohibitive by two recent measures offered by the Charity Organization Sociey, and made a law April, 1912.The first measure was a requirement that the water-closet in the Vanderbilt tenement, and in fact in all the open-stair tenements, and in future buildings of that type should be placed on the valuable and limited outside wall space known as the periphery, whereas adequate ventilation and lighting was provided for the water-closet on the "court stair recess" through a window, view-proof even when open. The New York Academy of Medicine, the Tenement Economies Society and many other societies, as well as individuals, regret this added load on the small wage-earner. This alone is prohibitive, probably adding 12 per cent, to the already high rent.

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