Housing and refusing a handrail in temporary decant and not allowed to bid while waiting. — Scope | Disability forum
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Housing and refusing a handrail in temporary decant and not allowed to bid while waiting.

Useless Community member Posts: 7 Listener
Hello all,

If anyone can help we would be grateful. We are a family of four and my other half has MS and i have arthritis in lower back. I am dyslexic and dyspraxic and find online stuff extremely difficult. Both adult sons have ASD sharing one box room. We was approved a decant over 4 years ago from our local authority. still waiting for the housing ombudsman who is investigating but has a back log. We have had no heating for nearly TWO years now, the house needs gutting and new heating system put in. We have had 4 surveyors attend and view the current property and all said the work (and the head of housing )  will take more than 6 months probably longer so we will have to move out.

They recently offered a 3 storey townhouse that was supposed to have a stairlift (they sent pictures showing property had stairlift and handrail)so we thought great as my partner uses a wheelchair and currently does struggle to  manage a flight of stairs but current residence  has two handrails and this helps. Current residence has one flight of stairs. 

He lives upstairs (bedroom doubles up as living room for him). The bedroom is on the same level and adjacent to the bathroom just the same as the property they offered. Anyway we visited this property and they offered this property knowing my partner uses a wheelchair. We visited and THERE WAS NO STAIRLIFT AND NO HANDRAIL AND 4 FLIGHTS OF STAIRS SIX STEPS EACH FLIGHT so we asked about a handrail and could it be put in. We wanted this property as current residence has two bedrooms and this property they offered had 3 bedrooms and two toilets. Youngest son has bowel problems.

 We never declined this property otherwise why would we ask for a handrail. We was refused this minor adaptation and the council withdrew the offer and said because its a temp property no adaptations could be done ( not according to their own decant policy as adaptations will be considered) . We even offered to pay for the handrail and installation ourselves but the council refused. we cannot continue to live in our current property as its not suitable (council agreed that current property does meet our medical needs) and this property they offered was 3 bedroom with two toilets. Yet we are still stuck in current residence with no heating.

They offered the townhouse to another family who were waiting to move in. This was back in october. This may surprise you, we recently visited the same property beginning of Jan  and ITS STILL EMPTY WITH THE BACK GATE WIDE OPEN.  There is so much more i could explain, like how we cannot go into a hotel as partner uses special waste collections and no travelodge is wanting a collection of yellow bags in reception. Also you can only stay in travelodge 28 days as every 28 days you have to move.

 They have already said work to our current property will take more than six months or longer. Also we are NOT ALLOWED TO BID ON ANY PROPERTIES, so basically we are stuck. Anyone  have any ideas, we cannot afford solicitors and we are council tenants. No family nearby. Tried pro bono solicitors and all they do is draft letters  and print off policies for you which is helpful but we need something more forceful, until such time the council is forcing us to stay here with no heating.

 No good using temp heaters as plug points are hanging off the wall in the main bedroom as plaster is blown and there is no heating in bathroom so showering is not ideal at the moment as its freezing and i have trouble getting my partner in and out of the bath even with a swivel bath seat. So there you have it, feeling useless, hence the username  with regards, useless. (PS I am no good with technical stuff so i told them years ago i do not know how to access online bidding anyway and  they ignored me.


  • Useless
    Useless Community member Posts: 7 Listener
    sorry rosie,  i could not reply as i kept getting messages everytime i try to log in as it kept saying my credentials dont match. finally managed to get onto forum today. its so frustrating. regards from useless
  • Jimm_Scope
    Jimm_Scope Posts: 2,705 Scope online community team
    Useless said:
    sorry rosie,  i could not reply as i kept getting messages everytime i try to log in as it kept saying my credentials dont match. finally managed to get onto forum today. its so frustrating. regards from useless
    Hi @Useless, what sort of messages were you getting? You can email us at community@scope.org.uk if you have any further issues. That email is for helping people get onto and use this community.

    Regarding your issue, have you spoken to your local councillor about this? It feels incredibly unfair that you are not allowed to bid for not taking a property that was not suitable to you. Citizen's Advice has a page on offers for unsuitable homes here, unfortunately it does still require checking your local councils rules as each one can differ.
    They/Them, however they are no wrong pronouns with me so whatever you feel most comfortable with
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  • April2018mom
    April2018mom Posts: 2,882 Disability Gamechanger

    Try Citizens Advice UK for some more advice and support. Another source of information is Shelter. Your local council social services department can also offer recommendations and tips and ideas on self advocacy. Good luck. You can do this. You are in my prayers however. Also speak to a local councillor. 

    I would request a face to face meeting pronto to talk over any concerns here and make some brief summary notes too. The local council social services team may even know of a useful occupational therapist. Failing that try the councillor. 

    You may wish to draft up a politely worded letter of appeal to her or him. I’m sorry you are in this crisis. If you can, do take photos of the entire house in question here. 


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