Mum flees bedbug-infested B&B ‘like horror film’ and sleeps in car with 3 kids
A mum-of-three claims she and her kids were forced to sleep in her car as their emergency B&B was so riddled with bedbugs.
Haniya's family were sent to the B&B by Birmingham City Council after two years of sofa surfing.
She claimed that one night she woke up to find her children crying. When she pulled back the sheets there were hordes bedbugs biting them, reports BirminghamLive.
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Haniya described the scene as like something from a "horror movie".
The next day, and over the course of the next nine weeks, she said she raised multiple complaints with the B&B and Birmingham City Council.
The overall conditions in the B&B were "disgusting" according to Haniya.
She complained about the bed and bedding – it was eventually replaced – but also about a lack of hot water, poor heating and sparse cleaning regime.
The only cooking facilities were a tiny kitchen shared by around 30 families. She said the family's room was so close to the kitchen the noise disturbed them constantly, frequently in the early hours.
Haniya said: "I raised complaints, I reached out to the city council, asked for support and a move to somewhere more permanent. But this was it. They said it was my only option."
Birmingham is the national hotspot for prolonged B&B use with hundreds of families stuck in them every night.
The city's homelessness and housing chief Cllr Sharon Thompson said she was disappointed to hear of poor experiences and encouraged any families affected to share complaints with the council's housing team.
"There is a huge amount of pressure on the temporary accommodation team – we have increased their numbers to help meet demand but the demand keeps going up," she said.
"We do not want to be leaving people in bed and breakfast for weeks on end, it is not the right place for them and certainly not for children."
Birmingham City Council said any complaints from tenants in emergency accommodation would be investigated and attempts made to resolve the issue. If necessary, alternative accommodation is offered.
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