Mayor Dickens honors Forest Cove's Ms. Peaches with Phoenix Award

WABE's investigation, "The Last Year At Forest Cove," followed Ms. Peaches for a year in her fight for better conditions. She is now receiving a city award. (Alphonso Whitfield/WABE)

A former resident of the Forest Cove apartments in Southeast Atlanta is receiving a prestigious award from the city.

WABE followed Ms. Peaches over the course of a year as part of an investigation into the complex’s often inhumane living conditions.

The story showed her long fight for repairs for the apartment residents and continued protests against the landlord’s delays.

In his State of the City address today, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens said Ms. Peaches understood the need to speak up for herself and her neighbors.

He asked her to stand as the audience clapped.

“On behalf of a grateful city for your courage, your fortitude and your persistence,” Dickens said. “I am proud to tell you that I will present you with the Phoenix Award, the city’s highest honor.”

The Phoenix Awards started under the administration of former Mayor Kasim Reed and recognizes outstanding service in the city.

Forest Cove had suffered from issues such as leaks, collapsing floors and shootings for years.

The complex was part of a federal program called Project Based Section 8. This meant the government paid much of the rent, but a private landlord owned and operated the complex.

After WABE’s investigation aired last year, the city launched an effort to relocate the roughly 200 families left.

To learn more, read WABE’s story or listen to the Forest Cove podcast.