After waiting in line all night, affordable housing swap leaves neighbors angry at officials

WINDSOR LOCKS -- Dozens of people camped out for up to 20 hours in front of the Windsor Locks Housing Authority for a shot at a waiting list to get federal assistance for better housing. They later found out they wasted their time.

"As of 7:30 in the morning they decided to reprint it and email it out and say we're going to go with a lottery," said Sharon Palmer, who came from New Britain. "We were appalled by this. There was pregnant women here, there are single mothers, I'm a single mother home from work today just so I can get the help that I need to take care of my children."

The authority decided to go with a lottery system instead of the originally announced plan of giving the first 50 people who showed up a spot.

"We stood out here all night, it started raining and now it's pouring again now and I'm here discussing something when I should be home with my children trying to figure this all out," said Palmer.

The WLHA sent a statement to FOX 61:

The Windsor Locks Housing Authority acknowledges that its prior method of noticing intake for the Housing Choice Voucher waitlist was flawed. In order not to disadvantage applicants, we will accept all applications tomorrow, September 1 that are delivered. However, we will not apply a first come-first serve selection policy to the applications and we will afford another opportunity in October, 2016 that will give alternate application options which will not involve physical delivery of applications to the Housing Authority. This October, 2016 application process will be noticed on 211.

Applications were accepted until the close of business and people who were selected would receive notification in a few weeks.

Anyone wanting more information is asked to call 2-1-1.