System lets us down over disabled access

Mark and Margaret are desperate for the council to find them a new house.
Mark and Margaret are desperate for the council to find them a new house.

A MOTHERWELL mum is desperate to get her family a new home to give her son back some independence.

Margaret Bell moved to Chesters Crescent with husband Andrew and children Mark and Mary two years ago after Mark, who suffers from spina bifida, was unable to manage the stairs.

With the home on Chesters Crescent being on one level Mark got on fine with his crutches, but in December the 13-year-old underwent his 106th neuro surgery to remove thoracic cysts.

Unfortunately, this has left him paralysed from the waist down meaning he now has to use a wheelchair and the family have found the doors in the house are too narrow to allow Mark to get around.

NEEDS

Margaret said: “We approached both housing and social work at North Lanarkshire Council requesting their help and support in meeting Mark’s now constant care and physical needs.

“Our house is so small and outsized for Marks needs he can’t even access the bathroom himself and we have had to hire a container to put out in the garden for all his medical equipment as there is no storage space.

“Housing won’t allocate any medical points on Mark’s needs nor see this case as urgent, we even managed to arrange for a house swop, but it dragged on so long that unsurprisingly the other party lost interest.

“We have just been fobbed off and given the runaround for months, they won’t even come and fix the ramp at the front door which wasn’t fitted properly in the first place.

“The education department and Brannock High have bent over backwards and couldn’t have done more to meet Mark’s needs at school, yet their colleagues elsewhere in the council just don’t want to seem to know once he is at home.

“I don’t think we are asking for too much, we just need a house with slightly wider doors and a bit more storage space - my son has gone through so much in his life and deserves to be treated better than this.”

North Lanarkshire Council said it was discussing the matter with the family but refused to comment further.