Care homes neglected in oil-rich Iraqi
By Ruwayda Mustafah Rabar - Kurdish Rights
August 19, 2012
One of the main halls in the care home for men. It
has one air conditioner and there is no privacy for
any of the people in care. Their blankets are washed
often, but still have lingering scent of urine on
them. All Photos by: Ruwayda Mustafah Rabar/kurdishrights.org
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These are the beds for each person in care.
In the small unattended Garden, messes like this are
ERBIL-Hewlêr, Kurdistan region 'Iraq', — The
government based care home in Erbil [Helwer] is home
to institutional and ministerial negligence. For the
past 3 months we have actively monitored both their
living conditions and health. There are three main
carers that look after them and ensure they are
cleaned throughout the day. The carers wash their
blankets, clean their beds, and change their diapers
from 7 AM until 5 PM. During night only supervisors
are at the care home, and despite the mess the
people in care create, there are no carers to look
Care homes are under the superintendence of Minister
of Labour and Social Affairs. Ms Asos Najeeb
Abdullah was reappointed in her post in the seventh
cabinet, on 5 April 2012. We contacted her ministry
about the living conditions of people in care, and
the necessity of immediate governmental attention.
Unfortunately, we could not get an appointment to
see her regarding this matter. However, two days
later she visited the care home. The pictures were
widely published on Facebook pages, where she
appears to hug and clap with the people in care.
In an interview with one of the men in care, known
as Mam Qadir, he explained his situation to us. He
said, “Please hospitalise me, I can’t continue
living here anymore, I just want to die”. Mam Qadir
can’t walk because both of his legs have become
extremely weak. He has been in the care home for
over 3 years, and says “Life in care is unbearable.
We are just waiting to die”.
The care home needs to be regulated better, and the
Kurdistan Regional Government has failed to do that.
The government only pays 140,000 ID per month
towards carers to work full-time,www.ekurd.net
which is just over $100. As a result, no one has
been forthcoming to work in the care house for the
night shifts. The carers that work between the hours
of 7-5 are privately funded by generous people.
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