Isn’t there a good person in Christchurch who can rent this kind man a flat?
Thanks to Stuff.co.nz for this article.
Blind man evicted for keeping dog
By JOHN HARTEVELT – The Press | Thursday, 30 August 2007
A blind man is being evicted from his Christchurch City Council flat for keeping a dog which he said turned his life around.
Travis Hardy was yesterday issued with an eviction notice by the Tenancy Tribunal after failed attempts at mediation.
Hardy was given a Staffordshire bull-terrier blue-heeler cross eight months ago when he was so depressed he could not leave the house.
He says his nine-month old pup, Basil, has brought light into his life.
“He was the thing I needed. I wasn’t leaving my house, and then I get this dog who’s young, and he’s tearing around, chewing my house up and I didn’t know what else to do so I started walking him and I got my confidence back.”
Hardy, who started going blind at the age of 13, admits he was “a bit of a rough bugger” until recently.
But he said Basil turned his life around “big time”.
Hardy’s landlord, the Christchurch City Council, says no tenants are allowed animals in the Sydenham apartment block.
Community support manager Catherine McDonald said Hardy had been told he would have to get the dog registered as a guide dog if it was to stay.
“Two months later the dog was still at his unit and we’d received complaints from other residents about the dog. These related to the dog barking and tenants feeling both intimidated and frightened by its presence.”
McDonald said it was a “fierce looking dog”.
“Our prime concern is the wellbeing and safety of all our tenants.
“You can imagine it, if one of our tenants or a member of the public gets bitten by another tenant’s dog.”
The council had tried to go into mediation with Hardy about the dog earlier this month, but he did not turn up.
“There has been plenty of opportunity all the way through for him to get rid of the dog,” McDonald said.
“We do certainly have sympathy for him, but it’s just one of those processes we have to go through.”
The eviction notice was suspended until September 10, pending the permanent removal of the dog.
But Hardy, who is now training to be a Lifeline counsellor, said he was prepared to move out in order to keep Basil. “I ain’t parting with him. I’m pretty passionate about my life and where it’s at.”