Ja Rule held a press conference featuring several New York City council members to protest the city's public housing conditions on Tuesday, The New York Times reports.
The rapper was joined by New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) residents to speak out against the lack of heat and hot water in public housing properties.
Thousands of New York City residents have gone without heat and hot water throughout the winter months, according to the Times. During the press conference, Ja Rule said it's time for the people to "stand up."
"The reason why I'm here, is right here, to bring awareness to this situation," the rapper said. "My voice doesn't need the voice to be heard, my voice needs to be the one for the people so we can speak on these injustices."
He also added, "I'm here to bring these cameras here, so we can bring light to this situation … It's been going on for a long time, a lot of years, and it's time that we, the people, stand up, and let our voices be heard."
Ja Rule, a Queens native, added that the City of New York, City Hall, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo should all be ashamed of the public housing conditions.
"How can the kids go to school and get a good education if they gotta go home, and there's no heat, and there's no water?" he asked.
NYCHA is the largest public housing authority in North America, and is home to 1 in 14 New Yorkers. De Blasio announced in January that the City planned to invest $13 million to "help NYCHA rapidly respond to heating emergencies and replace failing equipment."
"These are Americans, New Yorkers, living in third world conditions and it should not be this way," the rapper said.