Disabled Homerton woman furious at being left without a toilet
PUBLISHED: 09:00 16 May 2015
A disabled woman has been left “heartbroken” after her housing association scheduled works to her bathroom which left her without access to a toilet.
Nadine Rawlins, of Lee Conservancy Road, in Homerton, spoke of the embarrassment and loss of dignity she felt when she had to look for facilities away from her home on April 30 and May 1.
She said: “The toilet couldn’t be used during the working hours due to the renovation and there was no running water.
“I had to drive my wheelchair to my daughter’s school to go to the toilet. Thankfully I was well enough to do so as most days I can’t manage to move much at all. I also had to use a toilet at one of my therapy sessions.
“The workmen were here from April 28 to May 8 and on other occasions, they tried to be accommodating; each time we needed to use the toilet it took two hours to screw it back in. I would have thought Shian [Housing Association] would have been more thoughtful before doing work on a property that had a disabled tenant – maybe providing a temporary toilet outside – but there was no empathy.”
Mrs Rawlins and her daughter have type 3 Ehlers Danlos syndrome, a connective tissue disorder which can cause ongoing chronic pain.
She said: “I was diagnosed at 31 and I am now 36, but before that, I had seizures and panic attacks and never knew I had a name for what was going on.
“I also use laxatives nightly because of my condition and have a lot of issues with my intestines.”
A working toilet has now been installed but Mrs Rawlins said that it is much lower than the previous one, meaning she has to bend her legs painfully to use it.
She said: “I am so exhausted and heartbroken by everything.”
Mrs Rawlins has also raised concern about scheduled work to her kitchen, which she fears will exacerbate her and her daughter’s condition.
A spokesman for Shian Housing Association said works for the property were agreed with the tenant before they commenced and Mrs Rawlins was visited by Shian staff. The spokesman added the toilet was only unusable for two hours each day and that the tenant was advised this was going to happen prior to the work taking place.
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