Page last updated at 11:55 GMT, Thursday, 9 July 2009 12:55 UK

Tenant sues council over asbestos

A council tenant is planning to sue her local authority following the discovery of asbestos in her south London home.

Karen Connelly, 44, is spearheading a change in the law which would make it compulsory for tenants to be informed of any asbestos in their homes.

She has been battling to be rehoused by Southwark Council for more than two years after workmen found asbestos in her Rotherhithe home in March 2007.

The council said it had commissioned a survey on asbestos in its buildings.

But the authority admitted there would be restrictions on how much information would be released.

I'm left on my own and all I can do is shout so that other people don't go through the same.
Karen Connelly

"As is the case with this kind of information held by many local authorities, this survey contains personal information, including individual addresses, and so cannot be released in its current form to the public," he said.

"However, we are happy to consider supplying information about particular buildings, if a request was made."

But Ms Connelly, who moved into her one-bedroom flat on the Silverlake Estate on the New Rotherhithe Road in December 2005, said only a change in legislation would provide safety for residents.

"I want the law to be changed so that it's compulsory that when someone goes to live in council property it's made clear in the tenancy agreement about the existence and extent of asbestos in that property."

She added: "They won't help me get out and they not accepting liability. I'm left on my own and all I can do is shout so that other people don't go through the same."



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