Residents in southwest Detroit frustrated with illegal dumping

(WXYZ) - Jamie Hicks knew when she bought her home on Cabot Street in Southwest Detroit a few weeks ago, she would have to deal with the illegal dumping going on next door if she wanted the area safe for her kids to play.

"I have three small kids, they like to get out and ride bikes." said Hicks. "My nephews live on the next block, they can't even walk up and down the street."

Illegal dumpers have turned an area of Cabot Street near St. John into an eyesore.  Several lots are filled with disgusting garbage and debris. One of the lots is owned by the City of Detroit.

Wanting help, Jamie reached out to Southwest Pride, an organization dedicated to making their community better.

"We have families in this area. Kids have to walk to school.  Do they have to live in an area like this? No." said Elizabeth Valdez.

Volunteers tried reporting the problem to the City of Detroit, but ran into a roadblock.

"The phone number on the website doesn't work." said John Lopez.

The City of Detroit's website instructs people to report illegal dumping by calling Environmental Services.  Problem was, the number was no longer in service.

"It's sad." said Hicks.  "How are we suppose to reach out and get help if the numbers aren't even working."

Action News informed Mayor Duggan's office of the dumping nightmare and about the city's broken system to report the problem.  An inspector was sent out to survey the mess and within an hour, the city's website was changed with a correct number for the public to call.

A spokesperson for Mayor Duggan's office says a crew will be at the site Saturday to begin clean up.

To report illegal dumping in Detroit, the new number to call:  Ombudsman (313) 224-6000.

If you have a story you think Action News Reporter Ronnie Dahl should cover, send her an email at

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