Grieving daughter vows to stay in late mother’s home

July 7, 2014

By Christine Keighery

A Meigh woman who says the Housing Executive are insisting that she moves out of her late mother’s house has told The Examiner she is “devastated” at the prospect of having to leave the home she shared with her elderly mother since moving in to care for her in March this year.

Celine McAteer claims she was desperate to move from her own Oaklee Housing Association house in Gullion View due to damp and disrepair which she says was not being resolved by Oaklee.

According to Celine, her mother “begged” the young mum and her 13 year old son to move into her Moninna Park home to escape the damp conditions of her own house and to provide care for her mother who suffered from poor health, requiring an oxygen supply at home. Unfortunately, her mother’s health deteriorated and she died in May this year.

Celine claims that, as she was still deemed a tenant in the Gullion View property, the Housing Executive advised her that she would be considered for her late mother’s house if she submitted the necessary paperwork for inclusion on the Housing Executive list.

Despite repeated attempts to expedite the process via Oaklee Housing Association, Celine maintains that the Belfast based housing association delayed the procedure, finally sending her a letter advising she had insufficient points, just as the Housing Executive notified her that she was not on their list and they were allocating her mother’s Moninna Park home to another family.

“I’m just distraught at the thought of moving out of this house,” Celine told The Examiner.

“Myself and my son have such an emotional attachment to it.  Dylan is so upset at the thought of leaving, especially as we’re surrounded by extended family and grandparents here.  I’ve been to Victim Support for advice on the situation and they agree I have to do what’s right for my son so I’m determined to stay put.”

The grief stricken mum says that, despite the Housing Executive demanding the keys to the property, she has so far refused to hand them over and insists that her mother would have wanted her to stay on in her home.

“I am returning the keys to my house in Gullion View to Oaklee Housing Association and I hope the Housing Executive will rethink and have some compassion for my son and I. We’ve been through a lot this year.  I had a health scare and was attacked near our old house and I recently discovered someone had broken into it as well.  My mother passing away has been so hard and to have to deal with being forced to move out of the place we see as home now is just so upsetting.”

The Examiner contacted the Northern Ireland Housing Executive whose spokesperson said:

“NIHE can confirm if someone wishes to transfer from a Housing Association to a Housing Executive property or vice versa they would be asked to complete a housing transfer form.

The Housing Association or Housing Executive would undertake a housing needs assessment and allocate points given based on their circumstances.  They are then placed on the waiting list.  A home is normally offered to the applicant with the highest points.”

Oaklee Housing Association failed to provide a response at the time of going to press.