Ventana housing cites mental health crisis as reason for evicting student

Ventana Student Housing, located in Orem near UVU. One student is now facing eviction from the complex. Photo from Ventana Student Housing.

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This story discusses mental health, depression, and suicide. If you or someone you know is struggling with thoughts of suicide or self-harm, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK(8255) or text “Start” to 741-741. 

A former UVU student is currently facing eviction from her student housing complex on the grounds that voicing her recent struggle with depression and suicidal thoughts is in violation of her housing agreement. 

A picture of the eviction notice this student received was posted to Twitter by several accounts on Oct. 13.

The letter informed the resident that they had violated “part E and F” of the 7th provision in the lease, which establishes grounds for eviction. Part E cites the breach of the “quiet enjoyment” of the premises while F cites “recklessly endangerment of human life,” other forms of harassment, and “threats of physical harm against other Tenants, the Owner or its agent.”

The letter posted on the student’s door the morning of Oct. 13. Ventana Student Housing management gave the student until Oct. 19 to pack and “find alternative housing.”

According to Ventana management, the student had caused “undo [sic] stress and alarm” to her roommates by expressing her suicidal thoughts, which violated the lease. Management gave the student six days from the date on the letter to pack and move out.

While the Review was unable to reach the student for comment, several people close to her spoke on her behalf. According to Kim Rollins, a friend of the student’s, she was overwhelmed with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as well as her own mental health. She deferred her enrollment at UVU for the fall semester to focus on getting better.

In interviews with KSL and KUTV, the student, who wished to remain anonymous, said when she reached out for help, she never thought it would have the opposite effect. 

“The reason they were kicking me out was because of my depression and my suicidal thoughts, which just only made them worse — and it would make it worse for anyone having to find somewhere else to live,” the student told KSL.

KSL confirmed that the student was staying with friends while she looks for new housing. 

The Review has reached out to Ventana Student Housing several times seeking comment, but as of publication the calls have not been returned. 

Many Twitter users posted the letter, expressing their “outrage” at the situation and calling the eviction “cruel and disturbing.”

Although Ventana is not officially affiliated with UVU, many students choose to live there due to the complex’s proximity to campus. Ventana is listed in resources provided by the Office of Housing and Resident Life.

A spokesperson for UVU responded to the situation, stating that they are “hopeful that the apartment managers will be able to work with [the student] to solve her contract issue.”

“Our hearts go out to her and those who struggle with mental health issues,” reads the statement.

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