The West

Coping with a pregnancy when you are the height of a seven-year-old and have a spinal condition that could lead to paralysis if you fall awkwardly is difficult enough.

Add to that the stress of living in an old, run-down house which has been declared a medically unsafe environment, and life becomes even harder.

Hayley Saunders, 20, who has dwarfism and is just 127cm tall, has a condition known as spinal stenosis, which causes pressure on the spinal cord.

"If I were to fall over or be pushed over . . . I could become paralysed for life," she said.

Her baby with fiance Shane Gill is due next month.

Ms Saunders said she had been told she was on the list for priority housing, but there was no timeframe on when accommodation might be available.

The Opposition wrote to Housing Minister Terry Redman last month requesting priority housing for Ms Saunders after her doctor advised that living conditions in her private rental accommodation in Beckenham could increase her risk of falling.

Shadow housing minister Peter Tinley said in his letter that the house had been assessed by the high-risk antenatal clinic at King Edward Memorial Hospital as "not a medically safe environment". He had not received a response.

A spokesman from Mr Redman's office said yesterday the matter would be looked into.

The West Australian

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