Wendy is NOT a widget. Widgets can go anywhere. Wendy can’t.
“Widget” is used in texts and speech, especially in the context of accounting, to indicate a hypothetical “any-product”. Companies in such texts will frequently be given names such as “ABC Widgets” or “Acme Widget Corp.” to indicate that the particular business of the hypothetical company is not relevant to the topic of discussion.
(Widget economics – wikipedia)
“Economists often use the term widget to refer to an abstract unit of production.”
Wendy is NOT a widget as her local housing authority seems to believe. They have a capacity problem, but instead of addressing the need for improved (and accessible) capacity, they want to re-arrange people’s lives as if they were widgets, with little to no regard or understanding of the consequences.
INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS ‘Capacity’
“The widget manufacturer may be able to produce 150,000 widgets in a month. However, due to downtime because of equipment maintenance and worker illness, only about 130,000 widgets can actually be produced per month. Over the long run, a business can increase its capacity and output by acquiring more factors of productions. For example, if market demand for widgets spikes, the widget manufacturer can buy more equipment and hire more workers, and thus increase its capacity to 175,000 widgets per month.”
Wendy is not a widget. She is a living, breathing, human being, a human being with a complex, chronic environmentally linked condition and disability related needs, needs that widgets don’t have.
The housing authority from which Wendy rents her safe home has deemed her over-housed, and are in the process of evicting her, despite the fact that Wendy has no other option for medically required, safe housing available, and no safe access to any of the other places most people take for granted (see below).
In the following audio interview with Wendy, among other things, she talks about the process her grown children take to detox themselves enough to be able to safely visit with her, so that she is able to safely hug them when they come to town.
Due to the toxic chemicals in everyday laundry and personal care products, I haven’t been able to hug anyone for years. The only physical contact I have had with other living beings is with the local chipmunks, before the neighborhood cats get them. Now I can’t allow myself to get close with them because I get too sad when they are killed.
As for Wendy’s housing situation, I was there a few years ago. Some of my story was public. Some of you may remember… What I went through, no-one should have to endure, yet Wendy is being subjected to a very similar experience, an experience that in other circumstances (when done to prisoners) would rightfully be described as torture.
Due to everyday barriers, she cannot access the places most people go, even just for a change of scenery. For people with severe MCS/ES, there are no accessible libraries, no malls, no movie houses, no vacations, no restaurants, no workplaces (see image below for more). There’s no anywhere but home, the only safe place in a world that is full of exposures that are dangerous to one’s health and abilities, and for that safe home to be taken away without having a safe replacement available, is nothing less than cruel! Would you force a peanut allergic person into a new home full of and surrounded by peanuts because you could? Because the book of widgets said you should?
Why are there almost no medically required, accessible safe homes for people with this disabling condition? I now live in the only multi-unit building that was built for people with MCS/ES in Canada, and it was a church group who organized it. There are some serious drawbacks due to budgetary issues, and there’s still little to no access to other basic needs (for example, contrary to the description in that link, this is NOT walking distance to shopping when one is disabled, with or without MCS/ES).
The barriers are systemic, even though almost 3% of the Canadian population have been officially diagnosed, despite the fact that most people are unable to find doctors who have learned how to diagnose MCS/ES.
Wendy HAS been diagnosed, and her doctors HAVE specified what her housing needs are, so why is she being treated like a widget and having her human rights and medical needs ignored?
Please listen to Wendy being interviewed by Natasha MacDonald
The best case scenario would be for me to be able to stay in my safe for me home that I’ve lived in for over 20 years. The home that meets the recommendations of my medical specialist.
More info and how we can help: http://www.wendyshouse.ca/
Wendy also needs a pro-bono lawyer, or funds to hire one, otherwise she’ll be forced to represent herself. Are you a lawyer who can help her?