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Hainault residents claim their emergency alarm is responded to “50%” of the time after man dies

PUBLISHED: 07:00 22 February 2018 | UPDATED: 10:44 22 February 2018

Residents said the most vulnerable are being hit by goverment cut and Redbridge Council's actions. Picture: Ellena Cruse

Residents said the most vulnerable are being hit by goverment cut and Redbridge Council's actions. Picture: Ellena Cruse

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Angry neighbours have blasted an emergency alarm service claiming “no one came for hours when a sheltered accommodation resident pulled his Lifeline cord after becoming ill in the bathroom”.

Redbridge Council response:

“Lifeline has supported Bernard House wardens, who are reemployed by Outward, in carrying out alarm call checks to residents, this is an additional role that Lifeline undertakes to help ensure the safety and well-being of clients. Over the last three years there is no indication that there was ever a Lifeline call from any property at Bernard House which did not receive a response, the average time of response being 17 seconds.

There were no unanswered alarm calls from the property, Lifeline were contacted when someone was unable to gain entry to the property and expressed concerns for the person living there. Lifeline has the capability to ring into schemes and make voice calls to residents in emergency situations so this was done immediately but there was no answer from the client. This information was passed on to the person who had got in touch, and Lifeline staff immediately called the emergency services who arrived within 13 minutes.”

He was found dead at 1.32pm on Saturday, February 17, at Bernard House, Henry’s Walk, Hainault.

Redbridge Council said they received no calls from the property and responded quickly when someone else called Lifeline about concerns for the resident in the flat.

However, frustrated residents at Bernard House said they have had to use the Redbridge Lifeline several times and it is “50/50” whether or not someone picks up.

Allan Day, 75, said he has fallen out of bed on several occasions and has had to wait for hours on the floor in the cold until he is helped.

Residents of Bernard House are concerned that their warden and care services are to be removed. Picture: Ken MearsResidents of Bernard House are concerned that their warden and care services are to be removed. Picture: Ken Mears

“I have lost count of how many times it has happened,” he said.

“You hear a voice saying don’t worry, someone will be with you shortly, but on Monday (February 19) it was two and a half hours before I heard a human voice.”

Mick Akers, 70, said it is best not to be ill at the weekend or evening as you could die.

He is also angered by the cuts to the warden service, as that is the reason many people move to the accommodation.

Allan Day, 75, said he had to wait on the floor for help for hours. Picture: Ellena CruseAllan Day, 75, said he had to wait on the floor for help for hours. Picture: Ellena Cruse

“There has been no consultation to take away the warden service, we weren’t even told in person, they just photocopied a letter and put it under our doors.

“I thought Council Tax was being raised to help out with care, but we aren’t seeing it.”

Anthony Denahy, 57, added: “We feel neglected. Our voices are not heard – we are more vulnerable than ever.”

Eileen Warren, 93, is the oldest resident in Bernard House and she says the service has changed.

“There has been a lot of difference in the last 22 years,” she said.

“It used to be really lovely in here and if anything happened they would be in real quick.”

Martin Harris, 64, added: “Lifeline is supposed to take over from the warden after 5pm – it is not fit for purpose.”


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