Haven left me high and dry



September 2, 2016
Haven left me high and dry

DIFFERENT TEST RESULTS: A 52-year-old woman was denied refuge at Saartjie Baartman Centre

Shelter turns abused woman away after she tests positive for drug.

A  desperate woman on the run from her alleged abusive husband is dik upset with a shelter, who turned her away for alleged drug abuse.

The 52-year old kerkvrou woman says she contacted the Saartjie Baartman Centre in Manenberg on August 20 to seek refuge from her husband.

She says the previous day he had broken in and stolen items from her house in Blue Downs, and she felt unsafe despite having a protection order out against him.

But instead of getting help, she claims she was “treated like a common criminal” by officials at Saartjie Baartman Centre.

A drug test by centre management showed she had heroin in her blood, and she was asked to leave.

But she denies being a drug user, and believes the centre’s tests are faulty.

“I had brought all my stuff along for the stay and needed compassion,” she says.

“I was there for a few hours when they asked me to do a drug test which is compulsory if you stay there. I am on hypertension medication and painkillers. They tested me and claimed there was heroin in my blood.

“I have never used any kind of drugs in my life. Ek is ‘n kind van God en dit het my verneder en beledig.

“They put me out and slammed the door in my face,” she cries.

She was given the option of taking a second test, but says she did not have the R70 to pay for it.

“The next day I went to Parow Day hospital and the test was negative. They found codeine in my blood from the pain medication,” she says.

She says she took the results back to Saartjie Baartman and they apologised to her.

She is now desperately looking for a new place of safety.

“I am still afraid, but I will not go back to that place where I was treated again like I was nothing and nobody,” she says.

In a statement, Saartjie Baartman Centre’s spokesperson, Emma Proctor, said: “The client you spoke to tested positive for heroin when she sought assistance from the Centre. She returned the following day, saying she had instead been tested at a day hospital.

“The client was given a second test and again it was found that she had traces of heroin in her system.”

Police spokesperson Constable Noloyiso Rwexana confirms the woman has opened a case of theft against her husband.

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