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Homeless father desperate to keep family together in Harrow
A Harrow father is appealing to Harrow Council for help to return to the borough after he and his family were "harassed" into leaving their previous home.
John Owens says he, his 15-year-old son and partner Linda were harassed out of their home in Scotland earlier this year and returned to Harrow where they had previously lived.
After returning to the borough the family was placed in temporary accommodation in Luton by Harrow Borough Council and has also been offered accommodation in Manchester.
Currently Mr Owens and his son, who was born in Harrow, have been living out of a van and trying to stay with friends, while Linda is currently living in a shared flat and trying to find work.
Mr Owens said: “After going through what we had in Scotland and to be moved to Luton was not ideal.
“We just wanted to be back in Harrow where we knew the area and had friends and family. We’re not looking for a house or a hand out.
“I just want somewhere where the three of us can be together, safe and secure, just so we can get settled back in London.
“We just didn’t feel safe in Scotland anymore and we couldn’t take the abuse. We came back to Harrow because it is the only place in the country where we have a connection.
"We are not asking for a permanent home from the council, just somewhere so we can start to rebuild.”
Head of housing needs at Harrow Council Jon Dalton said: "Harrow Council has made a number of offers of short term accommodation for this family, while trying to identify how they can resolve their situation in the long term. They have turned down a number of these offers.
“Like in many other areas, Harrow is seeing an unprecedented rise in homeless applications and a huge demand for accommodation."
Mr Dalton added that each application is assessed on a case-by-case basis and when a family have been living outside of the borough for some time, or does not appear to have any links to the area, it is then not always possible to find somewhere in Harrow.
He said: “It would be inappropriate for us to comment further about this case at this stage. We continue to stay in touch with the family and the situation may change.”
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