September 19, 2019 12.47 pm This story is over 50 months old

Bigotry comments spark row over Lincoln supported living plans

The applicant wants a place to support disabled adults to live independently

A care provider has said objections to its plan to house more disabled occupants in a supported living house are borne of ‘ignorance or bigotry’.

It’s sparked fury from neighbours, who argue their concerns relate to overcrowding issues and are not discriminatory.

28A Supported Living wants to use 8 Top Lodge Close, Lincoln, as a seven-bed facility for disabled adults in need of support, with the aim to help them to live independently.

Angry residents had previously claimed there had been a number of issues with the house’s previous single occupant, with multiple police call-outs to the property.

It is understood the previous tenant has now left.

In a documents to the authority, containing unusually strong language, the applicant said: “We understand that locals may misunderstand the nature of such a facility and may make objections borne out of ignorance or even bigotry, but the [council] can be assured that this facility will have no adverse impact on neighbouring properties.”

Plans for the new assisted care facility.

28A said planning policy used in a rejection of the application in May was “unlawful” under the Equalities Act.

“To refuse this application would be tantamount to a failure of the City Council to properly discharge its obligations to the disabled community and a refusal based around [planning policy] would be highly discriminatory, at a policy level, to a vulnerable group within society,” they said.

Angry residents have called on the company to rescind the comments.

Richard Sargent, a former wheelchair basketball player, who has worked with charities helping disabled people, called the comments “shocking”.

He said neighbours included public service officials, teachers, doctors, Royal British Legion members and a care home owner.

Former wheelchair basketball player Richard Sargent is among residents who have hit back at the comments. Photo: Supplied.

“They’re publicly calling out people that are very much within the community and providing care for disabled people, they’re making very strong claims against them that could have very serious consequences,” he said.

David Spraggins called the statement “both offensive and unfounded”.

Their concerns include parking problems, the impact on neighbours, and over-concentration of HMOs.

Kieron Manning, City of Lincoln Council’s planning manager, said: “City of Lincoln Council did not discriminate during the consideration of the previous change of use application relating to this property, and it will not discriminate in the assessment of the resubmitted application.”

28A Supported Living has been approached for comment.

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