“I suffer from high blood pressure and at night when I go to bed and the dog starts barking, I get stressed”, says Michèle Giraudo. This septuagenarian from Montpellier, retired from the town hall, lives in the worry of hearing, every day, the dog on the 5th floor of his building in the Port Marianne district. “It’s ruining my life”she insists.
“I don’t know how long he’s going to bark for. I don’t think about it when he doesn’t bark, but it comes back when he starts barking again and I can’t stand that”Michele said again, with tears in her eyes. “It can last several hours, in the morning, during the day or in the evening”she explains.
“I have the right to live peacefully in my apartment.” — Michèle Giraudo, 72 years old
However, Michèle Giraudo tried to contact her young neighbor on the 5th floor. “She does not answer when the doorbell rings. So when her dog barks, I leave a note in her mailbox. And when she reacts, which is rare, she replies that I never came to explain myself home, that she didn’t understand and that I was the only one in the building to complain”recalls Michele.
An answer that Michèle could not bear. “As soon as I saw that, I went down to her house. Her companion told me that she was going to come up to my house and she did. It was the only time I was able to chat with her”says Michele again. “She said to me, ‘You are crazy!’ And there, I told him that it was too much and that I was going to file a complaint at the police station. I was then threatened that if I did something and well, something would happen to me”she remembers, sobbing and exhausted by the situation.
A known problem of the ACM social landlord
As soon as she felt it necessary, Michèle informed her lessor ACM, the metropolitan body, which gave formal notice and then summoned this tenant following Michèle’s numerous reports. “ACM couldn’t receive her where maybe she didn’t go”she regrets.
“And me, I turn, I turn. I call the police and they refer me to ACM. ACM redirects me to the police and I do just that. No one seems to believe me“, sighs Michèle. On the social landlord’s side, the situation has been taken into account: Michèle’s neighbor has already been summoned and given formal notice. The landlord can now go as far as terminating the lease. “If there is a termination, it may take time to set up”, concedes Sébastien Lefebvre, security and mediation director for ACM Habitat. Except that in the meantime, the dog is still there and Michèle continues to suffer from the barking.