Question:  Have you encountered emotional and mental distress due to a lack of suitable housing?

Results:

Yes 80% (33 respondents) No 20% (8 respondents)

Your comments: 

“At one stage, between moves, my disabled husband and I found ourselves in a position where we needed to turn to local authority housing. He has had a stroke and a traumatic brain injury. They gave us a temporary property with 2 flights of stairs! It was so difficult so I was very glad it was only temporary until we could stand on our own feet and find our own property again.”

“I have been on the waiting list for over 3 years since becoming disabled and no sign of an adapted house yet. I have had a couple of hospital stays that could have been avoided if my house was adapted.”

“I have been waiting for 4 years now for an offer of ground floor accommodation as I currently have a first floor flat. It is very scary for me as I need to use 2 walking sticks and have trouble navigating stairs in addition to reduced sensation in my legs due to spinal deterioration. We need more disabled friendly accommodation built very quickly or people like myself and those with worse physical conditions are going to be completely cut off from simple day to day activities and become severely isolated.”

“Myself and my partner were housed in a property that was intended for one person. I’m ambulatory with crutches, but also use a wheelchair. The property had several steps. The council wouldn’t provide a ramp because one of the flats in the block of four was privately owned. I would’ve liked a mobility scooter or powerchair but there was nowhere to store one. The house wasn’t large enough to use a wheelchair inside, and the bathroom was so small I struggled to get in with two crutches, and there was no suitable place to install grab rails around the toilet. The kitchen was so small that my perching stool had to be moved about constantly, eventually I just got rid and gave up on preparing food. But it was either this or stay in our flat that was 3 storeys high without a lift. Life was much harder than it needed to be and I became depressed because of the constant struggle just to live. After 2 years of waiting we were eventually offered a mostly accessible home by a housing association specifically for people with disabilities and mobility issues. It’s still not ideal for using a wheelchair inside, but it is one level with access to a private patio and garden. The bathroom is ideal and the size is much more suitable.”

“As a disabled wheelchair user I was somewhat taken aback when I was told that I would not be considered as a priority for rehousing as my present home had been adapted! No consideration was given to the fact that the area where I live is not geared for anyone in a wheelchair; lack of dropped kerbs, cars parked on pavements and a hilly terrain etc!”

“Wheelchair accessible accommodation is not hard to design or imagine but it takes a desire to produce something that you can take pride in rather than merely fulfil an obligation to government. Pride in one’s work is something missing from much of the bureaucratic systems which dictate how we live. More power to true design might unleash the desire of the next generation’s creatives to do something inspiring.”

“I spent two years trapped within one room as my house was not wheelchair accessible. Having full points and being on lots of housing registers for two years I was being threatened with a care home (aged 24/25 years old). I ended up moving into an accessible property earlier this year having applied across Scotland. I now have the house I need and am not in a care home but am now living in a brand new area three hours from my nearest friends and family and have become incredibly isolated. I don’t know what was worse. We should be able to have housing in the area we live in and be able to live near friends and family like everyone else. I’m now feeling very cut off from the world and struggling mentally.”

“There still isn’t enough accessible homes being built by councils or developers. They just ignore prompts from Access Panels.”

“I had emotional distress and anxiety after I became disabled at the length of time it took to have my home adapted for my needs. This included having a ramp fitted to my front door and having the bathroom changed in to a wet room”

“Many of the adapted housing they are building and offering do not have accessible public transport links, so if you take the house you are confining yourself to there is a high risk of being house bound and getting depressed because you can’t get out either to access employment or socialise.”