Glasgow family of six living in ‘appalling’ conditions with mould, rats and slugs

A Glasgow dad has spoken out about the ‘appalling’ conditions his family of six has to endure in their Mears-run flat. Muhammed Al-Mohammedi, his wife and their four children have been living in the cramped one-bedroom flat in the south side of the city for two years. The flat is riddled with black mould, damp, rats and slugs, which have affected the health of his two youngest sons, who suffer from asthma.

Family’s health at risk

Muhammed said that his children are constantly ill because of the mould and damp in their flat. He said that his 15-year-old son was admitted to hospital last month with abdominal pains caused by his asthma. He also said that there is a leak in one of the bedrooms that Mears has failed to fix, which has worsened the damp problem. He said that the flat is very cold in the winter, as there is a large gap under the door and draughty windows. He also said that there is no running hot water in the kitchen, which makes it difficult to cook and clean.

Muhammed said: “This is not about me. It’s about my family – especially my children. Living with mould and leaking taps is bad for my children who suffer from asthma. There’s a constantly bad smell inside one of my child’s rooms. We’ve had to live with rats around the house and even slugs inside the house. It is completely appalling. This is not a way to raise children – I want them to live in a safe and healthy home free from mould and damp. My children are constantly ill.”

Family’s struggle to find a new home

Muhammed and his family came to Glasgow from Kuwait in October 2017 and have since received refugee status. They have been put into accommodation provided by Mears, a social landlord that was awarded three 10-year Home Office contracts to provide accommodation and support for refugees in Scotland, Northern Ireland, and the North-East, Yorkshire and Humber. The contracts were worth £1.15 billion in total when issued, rising to £1.45 billion post-covid.

Muhammed said that he has been trying to find a new home for his family, but has faced many obstacles and delays. He said that he has contacted Mears, MSPs, councillors, and social workers, but has not received any help or support. He said that his current flat is only classed as overcrowding, not as an urgent case. He said that he has been on the waiting list for a new home for over a year, but has not been offered anything suitable for his family’s needs.

Glasgow family of six

Muhammed said: “I have a one-bedroom property with Wheatley Homes. Even with the circumstances I’m in and having full custody of my girls, it’s only classed as over crowding. It is a single person flat so it’s very, very small. I can’t make it liveable. I’ve tried to reach out to other services, spoken to Wheatley directly and it’s the same situation over and over. I’ve gone to MSPs, I’ve gone to councillors, I’ve phoned social work. But it seems that because the girls are at school, they’re getting fed, it’s not urgent.”

Family’s protest for better housing

Muhammed and his wife joined tenants union Living Rent to protest over their living conditions outside Mears’ office in Glasgow. They held banners and placards that read ‘Mears, fix our homes’ and ‘No more mould’. They demanded that Mears take action to improve their flat or offer them a new home. They also called for an end to the Home Office’s outsourcing of refugee accommodation to private companies like Mears.

Muhammed said: “We are here today to protest against Mears and the Home Office. We want them to fix our homes or give us a new home. We want them to stop outsourcing refugee accommodation to private companies that don’t care about us. We want them to treat us with dignity and respect. We are human beings, not animals. We deserve better.”

A spokesperson for Mears said that they are aware of the issues raised by Muhammed and his family, and that they are working to resolve them as soon as possible. They said that they are committed to providing safe and comfortable accommodation for all their tenants, and that they welcome feedback and complaints.

The spokesperson said: “We are sorry to hear of the issues raised by Mr Al-Mohammedi and his family. We are in regular contact with them and are working to resolve the issues as quickly as possible. We take our responsibility to provide safe and comfortable accommodation for all our tenants very seriously, and we welcome feedback and complaints. We encourage anyone who has a concern about their accommodation to contact us directly or through their support worker, so that we can address it promptly and effectively.”

By Chris Muir

Chris Muir is a talented SEO analyst and writer at Cumbernauld Media. With a deep passion for all things related to search engine optimization, Chris brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the team. Specializing in improving website visibility and driving organic traffic, Chris utilizes cutting-edge SEO techniques to propel websites to the top of search engine rankings. Through meticulous keyword research, on-page optimization, and strategic link building, Chris helps businesses of all sizes achieve their online goals.

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