A Calgary mother of three was forced to prepare meals for her children with hot plates for several days because emergency electrical repair calls to Calgary Housing weren’t promptly dealt with, she alleges.
Tanya White and her three children aged three, six and nine have lived in a Beddington Calgary Housing townhouse complex for six years and claim problems have been piling up since then, but worsened last Wednesday when her oven burst into flames.
“The flames shot out of the oven and all the way across to the fridge when I turned it on. I called the housing emergency line and she told me it wasn’t an emergency and to call the next day,” she says.
White said she called Thursday and Friday and was told someone would come but no one showed. White believes the problem is electrical; the lights don’t turn on in some rooms, and in others the sockets spark when something is plugged in.
She says she sent a letter to Calgary Housing last year and made several calls about the condition of her home, which also includes water leaking in the ceiling and broken cupboards.
“I’m scared that one day there will be a fire. I cry every time something happens because I have nowhere else to go, but we don’t feel safe here. I have to unplug everything at night just to be able to sleep and feel safe,” she said.
When Metro contacted Calgary Housing, general manager Dale Stamm said they only had two calls on file and weren’t aware it was an emergency.
“We’re committed to the safety of our units and we’re prepared to send someone out right away and do what we can to take care of any issues,” he said.
White confirmed a Calgary Housing maintenance worker was sent out after Metro contacted them yesterday.
A burner was fixed on the stove, a light was repaired and White was assured the stove would be replaced.
“He also said he would put in a work order to look at my place top to bottom,” she added.