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  • Can anyone help us with what to do please?

    :sad: Hi I'm new here and very glad I found this place.

    My Son and I are terrified by our neighbours (we are both severely disabled) and need some advice on what to do please.

    The police have been called several times by us for different things that have happened and say they can't do anything about it. We are trapped inside this house with a large lump of wood against the door to try and stop them kicking the door in. (this has happened before and plenty more beside that). I don't want to say what they have done to us as I don't feel safe in saying so.

    We have got a solicitor onto our case but things are so slow in trying to get us out of here (by council or other).

    Our nerves are shot to pieces and feel so alone in this...Can anyone give us any advice that might help us please, we are desperate?



    Thanks in advance



    OneRinger

  • #2
    Hi OneRinger and welcome to the Forum



    Sorry to hear about your current problems, sounds awful for you and your son.



    It's difficult to know what advice to give you without knowing a little more about your situation. It does help to have a bit more information. but don't give out information you're not comfortable about.



    Do you own or rent your home? If you rent, is it from the Council, a Housing Association or a private landlord? Do you know what kind of housing situation your neighbour from hell (NFH) is in? The answers to these questions may open up other avenues for you to try.



    You must start writing everything down. There are some blank sheets in the Resources section which you can use:



    http://www.nfh.org.uk/resources/index.php



    Also, check out the Self-Help Articles in that section as you may find them really helpful.



    It sounds like you are really frightened by the behaviour of your nfh and as such, I think that you need to be making further contact with the Police. What exactly is your Solicitor doing for you?



    If you feel that it is no longer reasonable for you to live in your home, then you can make an application as homeless to your local authority, which they will have to investigate.



    The more evidence you have in cases like yours, the further you will get and the more you will be listened to. Please make sure you write everything down, get other evidence of your NFH's behaviour (such as recording them on a dictaphone, for example).



    I'm sure other members will be along shortly to offer you advice and support, so please check back here often to see their replies.



    Good luck and take care.



    [Moved to Ask for Help Here]

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Oneringer,



      it is hard to give you precise advice without knowing a little bit more info. Please let us know if you are a council tenant etc and also if the police have given you crime reference no's for harrassment/violence etc.



      I would agree with Holly that you could make an application for emergency temporary homeless accommodation with a view to being rehoused by the council/a housing association whether of not you own your home as you are not reasonably able to be to occupy it if what you say is as serious as it sounds.



      Please contact your local council asap - you may have already done this but be persistent - demand to speak to the senior housing officer that day.



      If you don't find that you as a 'small' person are getting anywhere with your Council, contact Shelter - I am certain that they can assist you (www.shelter.org.uk). Citizens Advice Bureaux can also help - of course once you have got an appointment that is . Also your MP and Local Councillor -it's hard work I know dealing with all these people, but ultimately you can get what you need with their help.



      You have come to the right place for support, so please come back soon and keep us all posted for the best advice .



      Mazza



      :nfh1:

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi OneRinger, and glad you found NFHiB, where I am sure you will get plenty of help and support from the members



        What a dreadful siuation to be in! I think Holly has raised a number of queries to help get a fuller picture (but of course protecting your anonymity). And you have already had some good advice/info to start the ball rolling!



        I do think the police could talk to you further re protection from harassment, perhaps your local community safety officer could look into this further with you? You clearly feel under siege here :sad:



        As well as the self-help articles

        http://www.nfh.org.uk/resources/Articles/index.php



        Do check out sections on the law in

        http://www.nfh.org.uk/law/index.php



        Please come back and let us know how things are going/ask further questions/have a rant/get some support....in fact, whatever it takes



        Regards



        Sapph

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for the replies so far....OneRinger's son here !!



          I am writing on behalf of my mum as she feels i may be able to explain things a little better. We have lived at out current address for almost three years, at first we rented privately using our own money, but circumstances changed and now we are on income support and the council pay the rent for us.

          As my mum explained we are both disabled, my mother suffers from osteo arthritis which severely limits her mobility and also has a condition which largely affects memory, so for detailed posts such as this I will do the writing on her behalf.

          We have always had problems with our neighbours next door, it is always the same house, but incidents have occured with several different occupants, the most recent being by far the worst and is causing a huge amount of stress.

          We recently discovered why we have had so much trouble from the said address, as it was disclosed to us that the house next door is being used as a "halfway house". This information came to us as the latest occupants were keeping us awake night after night with extremely loud music, so loud infact the whole house was vibrating with the amount of bass.

          (most occupants only stay for for a couple of months, but sometimes longer, sometimes less).

          The problems started after knocking on the door to ask them to turn the music down, (they regularly play loud "drum and bass" music right through the night until sometimes 8am) and since then it has gone from verbal abuse to actual violence (throwing glass bottles against our house), and most recently overhearing a conversation outside where one of the occupants was asking someone to give us "a kicking" as he couldn't do it himself due to coming out of prison recently. Now we are extremely frightened, the police tell us they can't do anything as no crime has been commited as yet, and we are to call 999 at the first sign of trouble.

          There have been many incidents such as, we have had someone shoot a pellet through our front room window with an air rifle, at 5am one night we were woken by a drunken female from next door who kicked the door in, breaking the security chain and the lock from the door frame. The list goes on and on, mostly noise nuisance but sometimes worse as is the case now.

          We are on the housing list with the council and have been for over a year, but the council just keep telling us they have no suitable place to re-house us as my mothers disabilty requires ground floor accomodation as stairs are too difficult for her to cope with. We have a solicitor trying to push the council on our behalf as we know that council's are notorius in their lack of wanting to help anyone.

          The solicitor is also trying to help us with the situation with next door, but as yet they have only just got the reply from the land registry to get the owners name and address and we recieved the copy of the letter sent to the owners of the property next door this morning.

          As with anything legal it's a long draw out process, the problem is we feel so threatened by this latest set of incidents, that any amount of time seems too long, we just want out of here, but the alternative accomodation must be big enough to take our belongings as we have furniture and alot of items that makes a home "a home", we have already lost so much in the last seven years, we can't lose what little we have left, it goes with us !!!!!!

          My mum is so distressed right now, every single noise, every knock, bang, etc etc is causing her to panic, she can't sleep properly, her nerves are on edge 24/7.



          We just keep running in circles as far as the police and council goes, which is why we have the solicitor working for us, but things are so bad right now we just had to see if we could find a place where we could get help and support and we found this place.



          I hope the above gives you a better idea of what is happening, and maybe some helpful advise could end, or at least speed up getting this sorted out.



          Many thanks for caring enough to read this long post.



          SDS

          Comment


          • #6
            Hi again OneRinger ('s son )



            Thanks for that information. How dreadful for you both to be in such a situation. At least it seems that you are strong for each other though, which is really important.



            I would suggest that you write everything down; tape any noise you can; ring the Environmental Health department about the noise and I'm hoping that other members will be able to advise you more on the Police issues.



            Regarding your desire to move: on Monday, please contact the Housing Needs/Homeless Unit at your local Council. Make arrangements to go in for an interview. Tell them you wish to make an application as homeless under Part VII Housing Act 1996. They have a duty to give you a written decision in 33 working days. Let us know what they say.



            Stick with it, you know where we all are if you ever need to talk and/or rant .

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi SDS, and many thanks for your reply on behalf of you both!



              Not sure what the halfway house is? Whether owned by the council, a private landlord, a Housing Association or another organisation? The people living there are likely to have a tenancy agreement/licence agreement which will have their obligations laid out in it. There are likely to be references to noise nuisance and nuisance and harassment of others, which some of them sound clearly in breach of! I think there's some mileage in complaining to the landlord, or staff, if there are any? Not sure if it's a hostel, a residential home of some sort, or what, perhaps the council can help clarify that for you?



              If the council have a shortage of the type of properties you need, also worth looking at Housing Associations as well, as Holly says. If the council accepts it is unreasonable for you to remain there, and accepts a duty to re-house you under Part VII of the Housing Act, they can also "nominate" you to Housing Associations. Should you find they accept this responsibility, ask about nomination to H.A.s as well



              Do contact E.H., and log everything, as this is all evidence, from which ever view you look at it. And do pursue things with the police further. As many prongs of attack as possible here, and each one helps back the other up.



              Is your doctor aware of the distress this is all causing? A letter from him/her could be helpful with both the Council and H.A.'s. A call to individual H.A.s should help you find out if they have properties of the type (size/accessibility/area) you need.



              Sorry this is a long and rambling reply! Wish you lots of luck, and keep us posted! Hope your visit here has been of some help



              Regards



              Sapph

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi to you both



                Sapph and Holly have both given you some great advice, so I won't double it for doubling's sake. Glad you found us, what you're living with is appalling and I can understand the fear and the way it must make you feel.



                Things obviously need speeding up quite a bit for you both, it is unnaceptable for you to be living like this and with the constant worry of what could happen next. Time after time we hear of people who will only be helped when something happens. Here we go again with another classic example of a reactive system.



                There are different ways too I think you may be able to speed things up via third party help - may I ask if you've ever had any Social Services/Social Worker support/input? Also, an Advocacy Service could well help you and help act with you on your situation - they could, pardon the phrase, give some extra clout to your needs and help you progress things more quickly with an independent outlook but helping you to represent what you need and are entitled to.



                Maybe you could PM (Private Message) or E-Mail me and let me know what area you're in, if you feel comfy doing so?



                What you're experiencing feelings-wise is very common with NFH sufferers.......never, ever put yourself down for it. The feelings of nausea, dread, fear and gut-wrenching reactions are ones that many, if not all members here on the forum experience. You are the innocent people in this and you haven't asked for this constant hassle either.



                Good luck with things and I hope you can progress things positively in the different ways you've mentioned



                :nfh1:

                Comment


                • #9
                  One Ringer

                  where one of the occupants was asking someone to give us "a kicking" as he couldn't do it himself due to coming out of prison recently. Now we are extremely frightened, the police tell us they can't do anything as no crime has been commited as yet, and we are to call 999 at the first sign of trouble.


                  I'd like to meet the police officer who told you this.



                  Threatening behaviour is UNLAWFUL, it is against and is contary to the Queens Peace.



                  People who threaten abuse or insult others - whether verbally or in writing simply by the way they behave can expect to face up to six months imprisonment. By merely putting someone in fear of bodily harm is common assault. Your solicitor should have explained this to you when you engaged their services though.



                  The very fact that your halfway house neighbour has actually said this and used this type of language could in fact breach his conditions set out on his prison release papers. I know what I am talking about here, I used to work in the Prison Service and had daily contact with issues such as these.



                  You and your mother have a clear and defined right to peace and quiet, to live your life free from constant abuse. The very fact that this property is a halfway house is of no importance to me, what is of primary concern is that you both should feel safe and protected.



                  I strongly advise you to go back to your police station and tell them that you find your neighbours behaviour intollerable and unacceptable, it is putting extreme stress on both of your health and emotional wellbeing. Given that they have already divulged their criminal convictions (which would be numerous given his custodial sentence) the police would have a much easier time bringing charges against them.



                  Furthermore, the council are seriously failing you and your mother by their very lack of help and understanding to your situation. I suggest you have a meeting with a Manager at the very least. Please do not accept anyone lower than a Housing Manager as you will be continually fobbed off as you have already experienced.



                  Persistence and keeping calm pays dividends, but so does being assertive and not accepting no for answer. You must act now and bring this to a swift end.



                  You can PM anytime if you feel that you want to keep things more private and I will give you as much help and advice as I can.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hi OneRinger and son



                    It seems you have had a lot of advice already from other members so there's not much for me to say except I think it is disgraceful that you have to suffer such anguish from these people



                    I would suggest you contact your MP and local Chief Constable as well. If these people are in a halfway house it would suggest that their sentences are still on file and, as Scooby says, they are most likely breeching the terms of their release.



                    Do you know if any other neighbours are being affected or are they targetting you and your son because they know you are both disabled? The very least the police could do is to issue you with an alarm like they do for victims of domestic violence. However I think the police and the council are abrogating their responsibilities in your case.



                    There seems to be a glut of privatisation lately and people are finding that houses within their communities are being leased as 'care homes' for juvenile and adult offenders, without any consultation with them. I know of a number of these 'care homes' in my own area and of the trouble that neighbours are getting from young thugs who are housed there. Whilst I have no problems with wanting to help offenders, young and old, I do feel there is a lack of responsibility from those running these homes. Landlords don't seem to care either, as long as they are picking up nice fat lease or rent cheques.



                    You should not have to wait until you are injured or your home damaged before the authorities act. To have a transient population of criminals constantly threatening your well being is completely unacceptable.



                    Hopefully the advice given by other members will help you to get things moving. Good luck



                    Misty
                    "Almost anything you do will seem insignificant, but it is very important that you do it. You must be the change that you wish to see in the world." Gandhi

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thankyou everyone for your replies....(this is Mum)

                      It's reassuring to us that there are people out there that care and understand what we are going through...We have been feeling very alone in this, as no matter which way we turned we were always told "sorry there's nothing we can do". or what has been done is very little.

                      The more I think about the council moving us the less I'm feeling reassured as this isn't a very big place and no matter where they put us they could still find us....which is a very scary thought for us.....I know I would rather be moved away from this place completely....but it seems we are stuck here with no future of feeling safe from this.

                      I'll leave it for my son to reply to you all later (when he's had some sleep) as he can explain things far better than I could.

                      Thankyou all again for your help



                      OneRinger

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi both



                        I'm glad it was helpful to get collective advice from members here - that's what makes the forum so strong - we all understand and by discussing your situation as a member group advice offered is normally pretty detailed/full as possible.



                        Hope you can use all the points given, please let us know how you get on with all of them, I think they will assist you with things.



                        Come back often and post when you like too

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Hi OneRinger and SDS



                          I'm glad that you are at least feeling a little less alone with this; and really hope that out of the many points, some of them help get some results.



                          Just on the subject of moving out of your council area - if the Housing Needs Assessment shows that the council cannot reasonably expect you to remain where you are, and they accept a duty to rehouse you, they COULD make an "authority to authority" referral i.e. refer you to a different council on the basis of that assessment. Maybe something to just bear in mind at this stage, as nothing is certain yet?



                          Hopefully, hear from you both soon.



                          Regards



                          Sapph

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            welcome to you both!



                            you have been given great advice already so I wont add to it at the moment



                            let us know how you get on with what you have got so far!



                            good luck :clover:

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              SDS here !!



                              Thanks to you all for the help, support and advise given, it seems we have come to the right place for sure !!! Some very interesting points have been raised and we now have a few more avenues to explore with regards to getting this situation sorted out. It seems the one thing lacking in UK society is solid knowledge of our own rights, and places like this are a god send. It just proves that there are still people out there who care, respect and show willing to help strangers and I applaud you all !!!!



                              My mum and I have some talking to do about points and suggestions given by you all, and no doubt I'll make the effort to contact people individually to discuss matters further. It just feels good to know there are people we can talk to who have experienced similar situations and know what can be done about it, we definately don't feel so alone in this anymore !!!



                              thanks again to you all !!!



                              SDS

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