What are my rights if my landlord is refusing to repair a clog in our and our neighbors sink pipes?

My girlfriend and I live in an apartment building. Next to us are our neighbors and below us is the USPS office. Recently our kitchen sink has clogged up and stuff started to come up our drain. This has included plastic silverware, knives, and other assorted goodies. None of them are ours to begin with. We later learnt that our neighbors have a clog in their bathroom sink and whenever we run our clogged kitchen sink their water level rises over in their sink. We have since contacted our landlord who lives in Chicago, Il (we live in Stephenson County, Il) and he yelled at us refusing to do anything about it saying that its one of our faults and that its our own problem. We have to pay for a plumber.

We feel that we don’t have to do this and that it is his responsibility to fix this instead of ignoring the problem. Can anyone familiar with tenant rights help us at all? We have already tried to use a drain snake only to hit a rusty wall/pipe. We cant afford a plumber either. Any suggestions?

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