A SINGLE mum with an agonising knee condition,is still in her third floor council flat five months after requesting a move on health grounds.
Claire Pickering is forced to make a torturous struggle down two flights of stairs every time she leaves her Kingshurst home, as it does not have a lift.
“The pain of using the stairs is unbearable, I’m basically trapped,” she said.
The 41-year-old had informed Solihull Community Housing, SCH, when she was diagnosed with a displaced knee cap, and arthritis in both knees in July, as well as when she underwent surgery in October.
But with no alternative accommodation offered, Claire was forced to defy doctors’ advice and continue to climb the stairs to her flat.
“It took me almost an hour to climb the stairs after the operation, I was in so much pain,” she added.
“I had a friend helping with the children but I had to stop using the stairs unless absolutely necessary.”
By November, the situation had taken its toll and Claire was rushed to hospital after collapsing.
“I heard a very loud snapping noise in my left knee and I was in immense pain. I screamed.
“My knee was a mess. The tendons hadn’t snapped but had stretched to a severe extent and the amount of internal bruising was also excessive.”
She claims she was told by two consultants the injury had been sustained by climbing stairs.
The full-time mum was forced to return to the flat again but after contacting Meriden MP Caroline Spelman, she was finally medically assessed, on November 21.
Despite being classed as urgent, she is still waiting to move: “I am now left just to get on with what life I have.”
Mrs Spelman urged SCH to do ‘everything they can’ to help the stricken mum.
A Solihull Council spokesperson confirmed Claire had urgent medical status as her current housing conditions were having “a major adverse affect on her medical condition.”
“Ms Pickering was recently offered temporary accommodation to a property that had access via a lift, but she refused this offer.
“Solihull Community Housing is continuing to work closely with Ms Pickering to find suitable alternative accommodation.”
But the council added that finding a suitable property was made difficult by the current housing demand in the borough.