Mum fears for safety of boy on 11th floor
Autistic 3-year-old in council flat ‘needs a home that’s safe to live in’
24 September, 2021 — By Helen Chapman
Aurora Zeka with Nathan – Ms Zeka says her little boy is drawn to the windows and ‘is not aware of danger’
THE mother of a three-year-old boy with an autism diagnosis says she is living in fear for his safety in an 11th-floor council flat.
Aurora Zeka, mother to Nathan, said she has requested multiple times to move to a lower floor flat where she feels her son will be safer.
Ms Zeka said: “My son is not aware of danger. I can’t leave him alone for one second.
“He is drawn to the windows and he wants to climb up. It is mortifying and I am so scared.”
She said she keeps all of the windows shut and curtains drawn. Ms Zeka takes her son outside as often as she can, so as not to be in the flat where she feels it is dangerous.
She moved into the one-bedroom home when Nathan was a baby.
Ms Zeka said: “Moving affects him so much. He has a strong routine so anything that breaks it can be a trigger for him. It is not good enough to move to temporary accommodation. I need a home that is safe to live in.
“The other day he got a chair and pushed it to the window and said, ‘Mummy, look,’ and tried to climb up onto the window sill but the window was firmly shut.””
Ms Zeka fears a repeat of the tragic death of Nawaal Sayid, aged seven, who fell from an 11th-floor tower block in Finsbury in 2013. It is understood Nawaal, who lived at Emberton Court, Tompion Street, had learning difficulties.
Her mother had previously asked the council to move the family to a ground-floor flat.
Ms Zeka said: “I am so scared for my son’s safety. On the 11th floor is too much. I am so petrified for his safety. To be safe, I have to be out, rather than be on the 11th floor.
“Living in this property is such a high risk. Your home should be a safe environment, not living in fear. Disabled children are overlooked. Disabled children should not be overlooked – they should be prioritised.”
Islington South MP Emily Thornberry has also intervened and assisted Ms Zeka by speaking with the council and requested the family be moved.
The council say they will continue to work with Ms Zeka to attempt to resolve the issues she has been having with her property.
A Town Hall spokesperson said: “Islington Council is committed to ensuring that everyone in the borough has a place to call home which is secure, decent and genuinely affordable.
“The council is aware of the issues that Ms Zeka is having at her property, and has been working hard to provide suitable alternative accommodation. ”