A DYING man who uses a wheelchair is being forced to live in a tent by the A64 after being unable to find a place to live in York.
Sinbad, 48, who changed his name by deed poll, says he has been told by the City of York Council he made himself intentionally homeless by moving from Liverpool to York last October.
“I came to York to help out my cousin but can’t stay there now,” he said.
“I was told I can’t have housing unless I go back to Liverpool and the only place I could go in York was in a tent. It was horrendous in the winter as the ground was too boggy for my wheelchair and it was cold and damp.
“I had a brain injury in 2003 that prevents me from working and I have COPD, which is chronic emphysema, that is not curable and will eventually kill me. I will need oxygen at some stage and I can’t have that in a tent.
“I also have fibromyalgia in my legs that gives me constant pain.
“Living outside is not good for my failing health. I just want somewhere warm to stay I am hopeful I will find somewhere as the fibromyalgia is degenerative and I will be reliant on oxygen.
“I was told by the Salvation Army that they could only help me with a ticket back to Liverpool.”
Sinbad has sold the Big Issue magazine for around 15 years “on and off”, but for now he is concentrating on tackling his addictive behaviour.
As reported in The Press last week, he joined Tang Hall SMART’s Musication programme and is a member of the band Resistence, formed by the programme’s CEO Sue Williamson.
“My doctor referred me to Musication, as the music programme is designed to help us tackle addiction – mine was alcohol, and cannabis in the past. I have never played in a band and the new experience and helping a good cause through charitable events is my focus.”
He plays djembre African drums and has written his first song. He hopes to have piano lessons through the scheme.
He added that he has a meeting with York Central MP Rachael Maskell on September 1 to ask for her help about housing.