3rd Mar, 2021

Bromsgrove man made homeless after contracting Covid-19 calls for more support

Harry Leach 6th Feb, 2021

A BROMSGROVE man made homeless when he was urged to leave his former home after contracting Covid-19 has called for more help for people who suddenly found themselves in the district with nowhere to live.

Stephen Kelleher had nowhere to go last month when the family of his 70-year-old landlord asked him to leave his rented room.

The landlord, who was shielding due to having underlying health conditions, was concerned about contracting the virus.

Soon after leaving, Mr Kelleher contacted Bromsgrove District Housing Trust (BDHT) for support and advice.

“BDHT originally told me that they didn’t have anywhere in Bromsgrove that helps homeless people.

“I have worked as a bricklayer for the past 20 years and pay my taxes, how is that fair?”

But after being contacted by the Standard, BDHT said it had discussed a number of options with Mr Kelleher, including offering emergency accommodation.

Eventually, BDHT found a property for Mr Kelleher but he said it was squalid and he was unable to stay there.

“It was very dirty and filthy – the bed sheets were covered in muck,” he said.

“But I did appreciate BDHT trying to help me.

“I have been put on their housing list now while I stay at my friend’s house temporarily.

“We’ve got a huge problem in Bromsgrove if you, like me, are stuck and have nowhere to go.

“It really needs highlighting so that people in the future can get the best possible help.”

BDHT told the Standard that it was under immense pressure because of the pandemic.

A spokesperson said: “We work in collaboration with Bromsgrove District Council and have a number of properties dedicated to local cases of homelessness however, there is currently an acute pressure on this service.

“We are aware of Mr Kelleher’s case and understand how being made suddenly homeless can be very distressing.

“Our team has discussed a number of options with him to provide support at this difficult and uncertain time.”

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