How does the building safety crisis affect disabled and older people in additional ways?
Everyone should have an evacuation plan to leave their home in an emergency. Many landlords and agents refuse to work with disabled leaseholders and tenants in order to put plans in place, telling us to ‘stay put’ in an evacuation and wait to be rescued. This is impacting on our mental health and putting our lives at risk.
Leaseholders are being sent the bill for the essential aids which enable us to evacuate. Where this is being billed via service charge, in some buildings this is leading to resentment among leaseholders who are contributing to the cost of their disabled neighbours. This is a recipe for harassment and disabled hate crime.
Some disabled leaseholders are resorting to crowdfunding to meet secure aids they need.
The Government has committed leaseholders to funding the remediation of the historic defects in residential buildings. This is wrong and we support End Our Cladding Scandal’s campaign on this.
Disabled people with care packages and those supported by state benefits are restricted from accumulating savings – yet we are receiving bills for remediation works for tens of thousands of pounds.
For those living in low/mid height buildings who are ineligible for cladding grants, the Government is imposing a loan scheme which is unaffordable for anyone on a limited income.
More Than A Flat
Our flats have often been adapted to facilitate our safe and independent living. We cannot simply be evicted in the night if the the Fire Service serve an enforcement notice. The reason we live in our flats may not be our choice or may be because of woeful levels of accessible housing in the area.