Mother and son with disability spend 19 months in tiny motel room
Published Friday, January 8, 2016 5:37PM EST
Last Updated Sunday, January 10, 2016 5:03PM EST
Karen Belaire and her son with a disability have spent 19 months living together in a tiny motel room. They are on a list for social housing.
“I was told that it could take up to four months, that it could take up to seven months, it could be up to nine months, even with urgent medical status, and being at the top of the wait list, which is so long,” said Belaire.
Belaire and her 17-year-old son, George, moved into a motel room in Kanata in June 2014. They are currently waiting for a two bedroom home with a washroom on the main level.
“George is not good with stairs and so the only units in Ottawa Housing that have washrooms on the main floor are three bedroom units so and because there’s only two of us, we’re deemed two bedrooms,” said Belaire.
Belaire said they also need the extra space for her son’s medical equipment. George was born with one failing kidney, and bladder problems. He suffers from epilepsy, has autism and impaired vision. He also needs help with the most basic function- eating.
Belaire said she applied for an appeal to be considered for a three bedroom home with a washroom, but was denied.
The city could not comment of Belaire’s case specifically. In a statement they said “those who have waited the longest are offered assistance first, with priority given to victims of abuse, people who are homeless, urgent safety or medical needs...”
The average wait time for subsizing house is 5.8 years, and can vary from several months to several years.