Seniors fearful of icy, 'dangerous' walkways at community housing complex

Seniors are struggling to get around on thick, uneven and sometimes slippery ice around their community housing complex.

"I really, really hurt myself bad." said resident Annie Nolan who injured her back in a fall this winter. "Even with my walker, it got stuck in the lumps, my walker went and I went with it and fell flat on my face."

Many seniors at the Walkley Road apartment building fear serious injury from dangerous ice buildup; made worse by this winter's especially volatile conditions.

"People are scared, they don't even want to come outside because if they fall, at their age, they can break a hip." said resident Lucie Lamarche, one of a handful of people upset with Ottawa Community Housing; saying more needs to be done to protect residents from slipping and falling.

"This is very terrible. I would say they don't respect the seniors at all, because it's only seniors that live in these buildings." said Theo Jean-Francois.

Ottawa Community Housing said, in a statement to CTV News,  it continues to make tenant safety and security its top priority; working closely with contractors to ensure entrances, pathways, parking areas and garbage pads are properly maintained.

"We understand that seniors’ buildings are of particular concern for icy conditions, which is why we work with our contractor to respond as effectively as possible and attend seniors buildings as well as accessible homes first to clear snow and deal with ice accumulation. In the case of 1650 Walkley Road, following an increase in calls from tenants, a significant amount of grit was placed around the property on Wednesday February 27th to help deal with the icy conditions. We continue to monitor the situation there and respond to tenant feedback on a case-by-case basis."

But some living in the complex feel ignored and argue more could have been done to address the accumulation of ice on walkways around buildings.

"Terrible, absolutely terrible and disgusting...nobody wants to go even to the grocery store!" said Jane Sunderland. "The last two years, especially, have been the worst for them plowing and putting gravel... probably budget cuts."