wheelchair using parentsgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Disabled Parents Network : One Thread
I am looking for some information from parents who are wheelchair users and live in houses. I use a wheelchair and have a four month old baby girl, my husband is non disabled. I currently live in a flat and have applied to the council for a transfer out of the flat. They want me to have a bungalow, problem is the bungalows are on an estate that is very isolated, with no clinic and no accessible shops for a good few miles. We are also supported by sure start (we go to baby groups and have volunteers to help us) and the bungalow area is not covered by sure start so, we would lose the support if we were to move to that area. I have told the council I want a house rather than a bungalow, trouble is they are refusing on the grounds that I cannot manage in a house with a young child. The O.T recommended this BEFORE I had my baby and hasn't seen me since the birth so hasn't a clue how I manage! I have contacted the Disability Rights Commission who say it is a case of discrimination and they are contacting the council. The council want to hold a meeting with myself and the O.T, council's medical advisor and the housing department. At this meeting I will be putting my arguments forward and I desperately need some practical advice on living in a house. I used to live in a house so, I have some experience but that was before I had my child. I need to be prepared for what they are going to say. If you can help please e mail me firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks
-- Anonymous, November 08, 2003
My name is Jessica,I can understand your situation and know how frustrated you must be. I am also a wheelchair user, my partner is ablebodied and we have just had a baby girl 2 months old now.
We have lots of run-ins with our local council. We live in a flat at the moment it is on the 1st floor and also has two steps in the middle of the flat seperating the kitchen and bathroom from the rest. I lived here before I became wheelchair bound so it is not the easiest of flats to get around now. I have had two stair lifts fitted one which goes up the main stair case and another just to get up 2 steps! What I do is have a wheelchair at the bottom of the stairs and one at the top so I transfer to stair lift then striaght to wheelchair. I use a Baby Bjorn baby carrier which is really secure for her. I am not saying its easy and sometimes wish I lived somewhere easier, but I love this flat and it is right in the centre of town which means I can go around the shops with ease. The council refused to pay for any alterations to this flat and offered me another flat that was out of town and half the size of this one. I didnt want to move and appealed their decision time after time even got on the local news, but still they wouldnt budge an inch and paid for nothing. I might not have the easiest of places to get around but I am in town and never feel isolated. I know I would have been unhappy living in the place they suggested and never been able to pop to the shops. It seems you have to have one or the other and its simply not fair.
I would be really grateful if you could contact me and tell me more about the sure start help you get as I am not getting any help at the moment and find it hard sometimes. I would be interested in any more tips you've got for coping with a baby in a wheelchair!
I wish you the very best of luck with your case I really hope you get what you want!
-- Anonymous, November 24, 2003