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AIBU to think the council have a duty of care here?

(42 Posts)
AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 17:36:48

Desperately looking for help here. Last week A mother and child moved in with us to escape an abusive situation at home. I should stress there is no domestic violence at this point. Her dh is an ex addict, who has been clean for a number of years, but recently delved back into the world of drugs and alcohol. At first he could hide it well and was telling everyone who would listen that my friend was mentally unstable and losing the plot (hence making up lies about his habits). However, he turned up at our house off his head and the truth became very apparent. Since then he has plunged even further. Life at home became unbearable for her and her child as he was often aggressive and nasty (tho never violent) and was more often then not taking something. They moved in with us last week. We don't actually have the space but are doing the best we can. Since they have moved in he has gotten even worse and is refusing help. He has a big support network who are trying to get him into rehab again but he won't go. This poor woman doesn't think she can ever go home. Even if he does get clean he has told so many lies, there is no trust anymore.
I want to help them the best I can regarding finding somewhere else to live. The problem is that when my friend married this man she gave up her council house as she felt she didn't need it anymore and someone more needy could use it. She now finds herself in this awful position and doesn't think the council will help her.
Is it worth asking or has she shot herself in the foot? Is there anybody who has had any experience please?

SuperLoudPoppingAction Sun 20-May-18 17:40:22

If she's homeless because of domestic abuse can she not go to women's aid?

The situation you describe where he is lying about her etc is domestic abuse.

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 17:42:22

Really? I thought it had to be physical (sorry I have no experience with domestic abuse and am a bit out of my league tbh, but that would be really helpful if she qualified)

MotherforkingShirtballs Sun 20-May-18 17:42:59

The council's homeless team will have protocols for this and will be able to help her, she needs to give them a call tomorrow. She will be classed as homeless, even with you giving her temporary accomodation, and they'll be able to put her on the housing list.

MotherforkingShirtballs Sun 20-May-18 17:44:50

Domestic abuse can be mental/emotional, financial, coercive control, sexual, and harrassment as well as physical abuse. Some abusers never ever raise a hand to their victim(s) and abuse them in other ways instead.

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 17:46:28

Thank you so much, that is Brilliant. I will get her to call tomorrow. I mentioned it in the week and she was adamant they wouldn't help her as she gave up her previous council house voluntarily, but I said that these are extreme conditions that she finds herself in.

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 17:48:02

Thank you so much Mother, yes I did know that 're domestic abuse. I just wasn't sure if you could only get help if it was physical, but that is great news.

YouAreNotImportant Sun 20-May-18 17:49:26

Depends what the housing situation is locally to you. Where I am she'd probably get a B and B.

InfiniteSheldon Sun 20-May-18 17:50:00

Hmm if she's adamant that they won't help then is it possible that she was in rent arrears or had to leave rather gave up voluntarily?

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 17:52:06

Well she could stay with me until she got a place, but I would say we are overcrowded. 4 bed bungalow, mum and dd in me and dh's bedroom, my 2 dd's (15 and 12) in one room, another dd (16) in another room, d's (9) on another and me and dh In the conservatory on a blow up bed.

Niamhanna Sun 20-May-18 17:52:41

She's not going to get a Council house immediately, but she should definitely go on the waiting list.

In the meantime they'll probably put her in a hotel/B and B.

Kraggle Sun 20-May-18 17:53:30

How did she leave her previous council property and what type of property did she move into (does he own or private rent or his council property?)

Women’s said should be able to help her either way and she should def get onto the councils homeless department first thing in the morning to get the ball rolling.

Kraggle Sun 20-May-18 17:53:50

Womens aid sorry!

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 17:57:21

She gave up her property to move into a house that her dh's dad owns (he has several private rentals). She is absolutely kicking herself for giving up her house x

Bumbumtaloo Sun 20-May-18 17:59:24

If you search for the local authority the homeless policy should be on the website, this should give your friend a bit of a heads up before she calls them.

Good luck to her flowers

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 18:00:26

Thank you BumBum

gamerwidow Sun 20-May-18 18:05:46

It really depends on the availability of houses in your area as to whether or not they’ll house her.
If there is no housing stock then the best she can hope for is temporary accommodation in a shared house but that situation could last for years.
My sister was forced into giving up a council house by a violent partner who then tried to kill her. The council wouldn’t rehouse her except in a bedsit even though she had 3 kids. The only other option was to be housed 200-300 miles away up north.
They will not have an obligation to house unfortunately which in my opinion is a travesty.

gamerwidow Sun 20-May-18 18:07:53

Our local council refused to even list my sister because she want classed as high priority. Sorry but it’s horrible out there for victims of domestic violence!

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 18:08:16

What if she found a private rental? Am I right in thinking there may be a scheme that would help her with deposit and stuff to get her started? Or have I made that one up?

expatinscotland Sun 20-May-18 18:11:56

Depends on the council. It may be a private let very far away depending on the council. Personally, though, I can't imagine moving into someone's home and taking over their bedroom whilst they kipped on a lilo in the conservatory hmm.

MumofBoysx2 Sun 20-May-18 18:12:31

It would be such a shame if she didn't get help as clearly she needs it a lot and she has saved the Council lots of money during the period of time she didn't have to rely on them.

AstridPeth Sun 20-May-18 18:14:01

Trust me expat she didn't want to. She put up a bit of a fight and said she would sleep on the air bed. But this lady has fibromyalgia and liver fibrosis. She needs my bed much more than I do.

Jonbb Sun 20-May-18 18:15:45

You need to ask her to leave and she should present as homeless to the l a asap.

expatinscotland Sun 20-May-18 18:16:10

She can go and see her council's homelessness office and see how she gets on, but there may be no council stock left and that will mean a private let or a place miles away.

happypoobum Sun 20-May-18 18:16:18

Where I live she wouldn't get a council property at all - you would have to throw her out.

Even then it would probably just be B&B for months/years.

There just aren't the properties any more because of fucking Thatcher

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