Toilet Lock In


News from Labour in Erewash: 2nd March 2012

80 year old Marian Rose did not get the joke when she narrowly escaped incarceration in a Borrowash public toilet at 4.15 in the afternoon.

The conveniences; located beside Wilson’s Chemist, are maintained by Erewash Borough Council.
Mrs Rose found the outer doors being locked by a man (who had not troubled to ascertain if the cubicle was empty), and cried out.
But she was furious at the close call. She checked the toilets the following day at 4.20pm to find that again, they had been locked.

Two years previously, Holly Hempell; daughter of local resident, Bernard, was imprisoned in the same toilet which she visited on the way home from school. After 45 minutes, she was freed when her screams alerted a passer – by who located a key holder.

Helen Clark; Chair of Erewash Labour Local Government Committee said:

Mrs Rose contacted me, so I telephoned Erewash Borough Council.
The relevant official was not there and nobody called back.
This is a dangerous way to monitor a service. Why public toilets are locked so early is a mystery – and the Tory Administration at Erewash seems to have no control over an employee. A failure to ascertain vacancy is driving a coach and horses through Health and Safety regulations!

Mr Hempell complained about Holly’s ordeal there and then and is still awaiting a response two years’ later! If this is the standard of service provided by Tory Erewash then it’s disgusting.

Philip Whitt; Vice Chair of Ockbrook and Borrowash Branch Labour Party said:

I fear that the traumatic experiences of Marian Rose and Holly Hempell may be the tip of the iceberg!
Are we going to wait until a real disaster occurs as a result of an innocent victim being locked in?

I understand that local resident, Bernard Hempell followed to the letter, the advice that our Conservative controlled Parish Council always doles out as the  remedy to everything; Contact your Parish Council; Call into our Parish Office and we will sort it out!’

Well, in Holly Hempell’s case, they didn’t. They did nothing whatsoever and totally neglected their duty of care to local residents.

I will be contacting the Manager of the Co-op personally to see if we can work out a solution that suits Borrowash; its shoppers; residents and visitors to our village. However, I remain extremely concerned about the way that Tory-controlled Erewash Borough Council is managing this service overall in the Borough.

Howard Griffiths; Leader of the Council’s Labour Group added:

These regrettable incidents earn the Tories several black marks.
Being imprisoned in a public building could have had tragic outcomes; especially if the innocent victim is dependent upon medicines and can’t take them.
What sort of ‘service’ shuts down at 4pm?
What staff training fails to teach the employee to check for vacancy?
And the complaints service has been shown to be woefully inadequate. Holly Hempell and Marian Rose deserve an apology for their terrible experiences. And if the Erewash Tories can’t manage two small toilets in Borrowash, the fact that they’ve been let loose upon a whole Borough is terrifying!

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