The sight of a disabled and homeless man in his 60’s dragging himself through the street in Oistins, Christ Church has tugged at the hearts of many residents.
The sad sight has led persons to call on the authorities to do something urgently to help Lenister Bynoe.
When Barbados TODAY visited the area this morning, Bynoe, who has an injured foot and cannot walk, was seen dragging himself around the area where he also sleeps out in the cold.
As they watched him drag himself over the pedestrian crossing, onlookers lamented that it has been several weeks now since Bynoe, who they said was involved in a vehicular accident last year has been unable to walk. They believe his last known address was Bourne’s Land, Sayes Court, Christ Church.
“I accustomed to seeing he out here for years, but seeing him like this now is really heartbreaking. It hurts me every time I see him. This man needs help. Look at how he just dragging his body cross the road because he can’t walk,” a concerned citizen said.
Trevor Welch, who plies a trade in the area said two Saturdays ago, he along with other vendors, asked police officers to do what they could to help Bynoe who struggled to get around.
Welch said the officers called an ambulance to take Bynoe to the hospital for medical attention.
“Couple days after that we see him here again. The same police that took him to the hospital wanted to know how he got back up here because he couldn’t walk. We believe that he dragged his way from the hospital back up to Oistins,” Welch said.
When a Barbados TODAY team greeted Bynoe and asked him whether he needed help, he responded: “Yes, I need help but you got to give me the help I want.”
The rest of what he said could not be understood.
Welch said that Bynoe was married to a Swedish woman who has a daughter and two grandchildren who all live in Sweden. He said Bynoe also lived overseas for sometime before returning to Barbados.
“Last year he got into an accident. A car knocked him down. When he got out of hospital he showed me the police report. So I took him to [a lawyer] and showed her the police report and she called the police station and asked about the accident, if anybody was charged or reprimanded which they replied in the affirmative. Now he was supposed to get the doctor’s report from the hospital to take back to the lawyer so that she could take further action, but he never did.
“Since then he has been about Oistins. The foot never healed properly and now he cannot walk. He can’t put no weight on that foot at all. So he has to drag around.
Welch said he has known Bynoe since the 1970’s when they feted together and he has had an addiction for many years which significantly impacted his quality of life, including a relationship with his family.
He noted that he has also made numerous attempts to get Bynoe help at various Government agencies.
“The type of person he is is that even when you try to help him, he thinks you trying to rob him. He gets a pension and most people take advantage when he get the pension. He normally gets his pension, get both cheques change one time, then he would buy fresh clothes, a bag and then he would come back to Oistins and find somebody to keep some money for him. I believe he last got his pension last month. Up to two weeks ago he was walking with a pronounced limp.
“I tried to help him on more than one occasion and he accused me of stealing from him, so I had nothing more to do with him. But he needs to go off the streets, to rehab. And unless the court orders it he will fight against everything. He begs people and he gets help sometimes,” Welch said.
When Barbados TODAY visited the home of one of Bynoe’s relatives in Bournes Land, Sayes Court, the relative said that family members have tried their best to help Bynoe over the years, but their efforts proved futile because “he stuck in his ways and ain’t want no help”.
The relative also said that while they knew Bynoe was involved in an accident, they were not aware that he was now in a state where he was unable to walk.
Human and social justice advocate Reverend Buddy Larrier also appealed for help for Bynoe.
President of the Barbados Alliance to End Homelessness Kemar Saffrey said he would have a team look into Bynoe’s situation.
Saffrey indicated that once Bynoe was willing to accept the charity’s assistance, he would be allowed to use its shelter in addition to accessing its programmes.