August 10, 2022

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A housing group mentioned it’s “devastated” and “sorry for our half” in failing to grasp...

A housing group mentioned it’s “devastated” and “sorry for our half” in failing to grasp one in every of its tenants had been left useless in her flat for 2 and a half years.

Sheila Seleoane, 58, was final heard from in August 2019, the final month she made a hire fee.

When police pressured their means into her flat in Peckham in February 2022 – after neighbours seen a balcony door swinging open following Storm Eunice – her physique needed to be recognized by dental data.

Residents had reported the presence of maggots and flies to Peabody Group “inside weeks” of the August date she had final been confirmed alive, however the housing affiliation closed the case the month after.

“We did not ask probably the most basic query – is Sheila okay?” mentioned Peabody’s chief government, Ian McDermott.

“I’m so sorry this occurred,” he mentioned. “We have apologised to the household. We’re deeply sorry for what occurred.

“The most important apology although I believe does go to the residents of Lord’s Courtroom. They did inform us that one thing was improper.”

Six months after Ms Seleoane made her final hire fee, Peabody made an software for direct fee of Common Credit score.

The housing affiliation has not repaid this cash however has pledged to take action.

In response to an impartial investigation commissioned by Peabody, the COVID-19 lockdown “exacerbated the size of time the physique remained undiscovered, however was not the reason for the delay”.

Peabody mentioned that it had recorded 89 makes an attempt to contact Ms Seleoane, however recognised these weren’t substantive and none had been profitable.

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By October 2020 the housing affiliation had contacted the Metropolitan Police to carry out a welfare examine on Ms Seleoane and an officer incorrectly instructed them she was protected and effectively.

The pressure mentioned that the employees member had since left the pressure however would have confronted knowledgeable requirements enquiry if that they had nonetheless been employed.

A coroner’s inquest this week discovered that the police and Peabody had missed quite a few alternatives to find her physique.

Dr Julian Morris delivered an open verdict and mentioned: “To lie undetected for in all probability over two years is troublesome to fathom in 2022.”