Man with broken back forced to sleep on the ground
Even during the heavy rain that is lashing the island, Odaine Campbell has been forced to brave the severe weather to get a few hours rest.
The 29 year old says that he has been forced to sleep outside the Poor Relief centre on Hanover Street in downtown Kingston because he has been rejected by numerous persons, even those close to him.
"I have been staying there for over seven years now. My own family that is supposed to be there for me, rejected me," Campbell said. "It rough on me. The rain wet me and I can't even get fi change me dirty pants because I had a lot of clothes and they stole them," he continued.
Compounding his distress is that he is living with a broken back.
Campbell says his back has been broken since he was a baby, when his mother threw him away. However, he did corrective surgery but his back was re-broken.
He gets around by using a type of wheelchair made from board. He cannot stand for long periods.
He said he tries to get jobs but employers don't want to keep him because of his back issues.
"The bone on the right hand side has been pushed right out," he said, explaining that the three metal wires inserted into his back broke, and the flesh has now grown over them.
"And the doctors say that they can't do another surgery because there is a risk," he said. "If they cut me again, I might end up dead."
He said the doctors told him the surgery required has to be done overseas, but he does not have that kind of money.
It is challenging enough for Campbell, whenever it is not raining, however, his plight is compounded when it does.
"I have to sleep outside on the shed, on a piece of cardboard on the concrete and there are a lot of 'chinks' and cockroaches crawling on the ground. The chinks (bedbugs) bite me. I have a lot of itching and lying on the cardboard on the hard ground gives me sores. I feel a lot of pain because the back break," he said.
He also says that he has lost custody of his three children because of his deformity and his wife has passed away.
He says he will continue to sleep outside the facility because he has nowhere else to go as no one is willing to assist him because of his broken back.
"That's where I have to sleep because of my issues," Campbell said.
Anyone seeking to assist Campbell can call him at 468-8891