Disabled Saskatoon woman feels trapped in apartment

A disabled woman in Saskatoon says she is a prisoner in her own apartment, because there is no elevator and she can't use the stairs.
Trina Mackie has fallen several times using the stairs in her building. 1:25
Trina Mackie says she has been told it could be five years before an accessible apartment is avaiable in Saskatoon. (CBC)

A disabled woman in Saskatoon says she is a prisoner in her own apartment.

Trina Mackie has muscular dystrophy which has progressed to the point that walking is very difficult.

There is no elevator in her apartment building and Mackie says she's been injured several times trying to navigate the stairs. Her apartment is on the second floor.

"When we moved here two years ago, I wasn't as bad as I am now," Mackie told CBC News Wednesday. She said her condition rapidly declined.

"It's very, very hard [to get out of the apartment]," she said. "To get back in the apartment I have to crawl up the stairs."

She has also, with help from family, installed things such as grab bars in her place.

She is on a waiting list to move into an accessible-housing complex, but has been told it will be a long wait.

"They should learn how to treat people with disabilities better," Mackie added.

A long wait

June Draude, Saskatchewan's Social Services minister, said officials are aware of Mackie's needs but acknowledged it may be a year before a space opens up.

Mackie said when she checked with officials she was told the wait could be five years.

Moving to the ground floor of her building is not an option because there are no apartments on the level.

She said she moved into the building because the location is close to where her son goes to school.

Mackie said her goal is to be in an unit that allows her to live independently. Currently her mother is helping her get in and out of the building.

"I'm stuck here until there's a place that's available for me," she said.

With files from CBC's Dean Gutheil