Dear Respiratory Friends today we are publishing real story of one patient with asthma from UK: Disabled Lady with Brittle Asthma to be forced out of her own private home, because a housing association wants to do works on an estate.
I live in Cheshire and have brittle asthma. This means I am hypersensitive to dust especially building dust. The local housing association are to carry out works on 7 blocks of flats, all within 300 yards of my home. I will therefore have to leave our home for 4 months whilst the works are carried out. I am also disabled, and cannot carry more than the weight of 2 pints of milk.
If you the reader were to be effectively evicted from your own property for 4 months through no fault of your own, how would you feel.
The housing association do not believe that the disturbance that they are going to cause is enough that I will have to move out, and that they think that I am the one being unreasonable in my request. This is despite them having all the medical evidence from my doctors and other specialists, and me previously having to move out during previous works.
At birth I had eczema and later at puberty, I developed type 1 brittle asthma with atopy. This means that I am hypersensitive to chemicals, food types straw and irritants, such as building dust, paint and wet or dry cement. They will either affect my eczema or asthma.
I am affected by this type of pollution, up to half a mile away.
I am not unique, there are about 250,000 people with brittle asthma in the UK, and 10% of the population have asthma at some level. There are two types of asthma. My type I have several asthma attacks per day, and I need to get away from the cause. Otherwise my breathing will get worse until I will have to go to hospital. The other type of asthma is people who are generally fine, but very occasionally come into contact with something that will cause a severe asthma attack, which can often be fatal.
We have set up an e petition regarding respiratory disease and asthma sufferers. This is non-political in the sense that it is not party political, and would benefit practically everyone. We have been going since May 2012, and we are well inside the top 6.5% of current e petitions. This is for a cause that is not aimed at giving the beneficiaries of the e petition financial gain, so you can see it has much merit.
What we are proposing is that people who have been certified by their doctor to be hypersensitive to anything related to external pollution, which affects them within their own home (either purchased or with a 6 month tenancy or more) can ask to be moved to a suitable accommodation out of harm’s way.
The housing association have a guest flat which is far enough away with a bed a suttee and a hob, where I could go, but they won’t let me have it because they say that my requests are unreasonable. They also have all sorts of other properties all over the north west.
As you can see I am not looking for luxury or anything that will cost them much at all, just a clean dwelling that does not affect my asthma, that I can stay in permanently. They have tried to say that they have day centres I can go to, but as a disabled person, I can’t move every day to a day centre.
I think it is disgraceful that a housing association can make someone leave their own home, and not think that they have any responsibility for their actions. It is against human rights law, but I cannot afford to take them to court. It is my opinion, that in these conditions the boot should be on the other foot.
Asthma UK say that the UK Government is looking at prevention rather than than cure. If this is the case, then this is what they have been looking for, as there are on average 219 emergency cases of asthma each day sent to hospital, and 3 of these die.
Most building companies and councils and the like have spare accommodation that can be used for this type of issue. Other companies may need to make a very small provision in their building contracts for people like me.
The massive savings to the country will be the following:
1. Fewer deaths (currently 3 per day from asthma)
2. Fewer admissions to hospital (219 per day from asthma alone currently)
3. Fewer doctor’s appointments
4. Fewer days off sick
5. Increase in wages or financial security for RD & A sufferers
6. Increased productivity for the employee
7. Increased productivity for the employer
8. Savings for the NHS
9. Fewer respiratory drugs needed by patients of the NHS
All of this available just for making provision for the estimated 250,000 people who suffer even low level pollution from works. Over time this can be even more accurately predicted, with the knowledge of where these respiratory disease and asthma sufferers live.
I hope this makes perfect sense to you, and that we can work together to get these changes implemented.
REF: Respiratory disease and asthma e petition.