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Broken lift keeps Barking mum ‘prisoner’

PUBLISHED: 15:34 17 October 2014 | UPDATED: 15:40 17 October 2014

(L-R) Khalil, Shadia Adbulatif and Jonathan McCartan.  (photo: Arnaud Stephenson)

(L-R) Khalil, Shadia Adbulatif and Jonathan McCartan. (photo: Arnaud Stephenson)

Archant

A mum has accused a housing association of keeping her “prisoner” in her own home after failing to mend a broken lift for more than two weeks.

Shadia Abdulatif, 26, lives on the top floor of the four-storey Wellington Court tower block in Axe Street, Barking, with her husband Jonathan McCartan and four-month-old son Khalil.

She says Southern Housing are aware of the broken lift, which has left residents on the top floor with no choice but to traipse up eight flights of stairs to get home, but have done nothing to replace it “despite us calling time and time again”.

“I feel like a prisoner,” she said. “I simply can’t get up and down eight flights with my baby, a big buggy, a changing bag and my own bag.

“I’m having to ration my milk for the baby because I know I can’t just pop out and get more.”

Regional director at Southern Housing, Tony Hughes, apologised for the delay in having the lift fixed and explained it was down to a problem getting hold of the right parts.

He added: “We anticipate that the lift will be fixed in the coming days.

“In the interim, we are contacting residents to find out whether or not additional support needs are required before the repairs are carried out.”

The broken lift is also taking its toll on Shadia’s husband, Jonathan, who has metal plates in his neck following spinal surgery.

He said: “Because of my surgery I really struggle with all the stairs and I hate knowing when I’m at work my wife is being kept prisoner, there’s no way she can manage it with a baby on her own.”

Jonathan’s father, Ron McCartan, 68, of Freshwater Road, Dagenham, added: “It takes me a good half hour to get up there without the lift.

“We’re being denied the opportunity to see our grandchild.”

There are ten flats on the top floor of the block with 22 flats in total within the building.

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