'Mold saunas:' Military family claims JBLM housing as source of sickness

Dozens of military families have filed a lawsuit this week against the company charged with maintaining military housing on Joint Base Lewis-McChord for making them sick. 

They claim water damage and mold permeated through dozens of military housing units and now they're suing the company charged with maintaining the properties in Pierce County court. 

Melissa Godoy’s husband spent 16 years serving his country during his military career. Their family now lives off the base due to the concerns they share regarding the military housing. 

RELATED: More military families say housing conditions at Joint Base Lewis-McChord are unlivable

"I started documenting illnesses," she said, listing a series of ailments. 

Godoy’s health problems began just a handful of years ago when her husband’s military career took them to JBLM and into military housing.

She said the home was making her family sick – and she found many other families living on post suffering similar ailments. 

Godoy has spoked with Q13 News previously about her complaints. She and others shared bafflement that their homes were not repaired before they moved in, nor after they complained. 

The suit is dozens of pages long, listing scores of families complaining how Lincoln Military Communities failed fix defective and dangerous conditions.

A spokesperson with JBLM told Q13 News they are aware of these concerns and are closely monitoring the issue. 

"JBLM is aware of the litigation filed against Lincoln Military Housing and is monitoring this matter closely.  JBLM is fully committed to ensuring our Nation’s most valued resource-its military service members and their families have access to safe, quality, and well-maintained homes and communities on DOD installations," Joseph J. Piek, JBLM Garrison Public Affairs Officer said in a statement sent to Q13 News Friday.

RELATED: Army Inspector General report addresses housing and mold concerns at JBLM, other bases

This week’s court filing comes as no surprise to Godoy, but a step in the right direction, she said. She insists another family is now living inside the home her family left, and that they might also become ill. 

"You drive on post, and everything looks great," said Godoy. "You’ll see they are just little mold saunas and the families are just barely hanging on."

Lincoln Military Housing shared this statement with Q13 News late Friday afternoon:

"LMH is aware of this recently filed lawsuit. LMH is fully committed to ensuring our residents live in a safe and healthy environment every day. We have industry-leading water intrusion and mold management practices and protocols in place. We treat all reports of water intrusion or mold as an emergency request, and we thoroughly investigate all resident concerns, including those related to water intrusion or mold, to ensure that they are immediately and appropriately addressed.

LMH is committed to putting the readiness of military families first. LMH, along with our Army partner, ensures every home meets common habitability standards and is fit for occupancy at move-in and beyond. We encourage any resident with a concern to reach out to us directly or seek advocacy through the RCI/DPW Military Housing Office."

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