Ask an Ostomy Lifestyle Expert

Access to Laundry Room

Question

Hello, I have an ileostomy and I currently rent the upper part of a home. Due to a dispute with my landlord, he is trying to block my access to the only laundry room available for miles. I don’t drive so I can’t even drive to a laundromat the next town over. He knows my situation and knows that I sometimes need the laundry room for sheets and clothes after an accident. My question is, is having access to a washer and dryer considered essential for someone that has an ileostomy disability? Thank you for your help.

Response

Thank you for your question.  I am not sure which province you live in, so my suggested resources may vary from province to province.

In BC, there is a Human Rights Tribunal http://www.bchrt.bc.ca/. Yo may want to contact them to see if your situation applied.

The statements below are from the BC Human Rights Tribunal website:

“Landlords have a duty to accommodate a tenant’s disability, up to the point of undue hardship. This means that if a disabled tenant requires part of their building, or a building policy, to be changed in order to use their rental accommodation fully and with dignity, their landlord must comply as long as it does not cause unreasonable challenges. For example, if a tenant in a wheelchair requires a ramp to get into their building, or a blind tenant requires brail to be installed in the elevator, their landlord may be required to accommodate these disabilities. In order for a landlord to prove that accommodating a disability would cause undue hardship, they generally have to show that paying for the accommodation would make it difficult for them to continue providing adequate services as a landlord, or that it would significantly interfere with other tenants’ rights in the building.”

In BC, there is also a rental ombudsperson at the Tenant Resource and Advisory Centre.http://tenants.bc.ca/

I would suggest looking into these similar resources in your province.

I am also wondering if you have having leakage problems with your ostomy pouching system?

An important goal for a pouching system is to have a reliable fit and reliable wear time.  That is, your pouching system should be changed on a regular routine basis rather than doing changes from leakage.  

To find a nurse specializing  in Wound, Ostomy and Continence, NSWOC, please see the following link to find a NSWOC nurse in your area: https://memberscaet.ca/find.phtml

Another resource is the Peristomal Skin Assessment guide to walk you through step by step to assess how your skin and pouching system fit is. http://psag-consumer.wocn.org/#home

I hope this information is helpful to you.   All the best.

Andrea Manson RN, BSN, NSWOC, NCA, all-round nice person, now retired 😉

Our friends over at Nurses Specialized In Wound, Ostomy And Continence Canada [NSWOCC] (formerly called The Canadian Association for Enterostomal Therapy (CAET)) have renamed their handy look-up page on their website. It was formerly called “Find An ET Nurse” and is now called “Find a NSWOC“. Click on the image to the left or link here to go to their site.

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