Reported by Nigel Boys
When Thomas Eric Duncan became the first person to die in the U.S. from the Ebola virus on October 8 at the Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, Texas, he left behind fears for the spread of the virus and a stigma that his fiancée, Louise Troh (pictured), finds hard to shake.
The 54-year-old fiancée of the Liberian Ebola victim was first of all confined by armed guards to the Ivy Apartments where Duncan had stayed before his condition deteriorated. Then she was moved to a Catholic Church retreat where she spent the remainder of her 21-day quarantine period.
However, even though Troh was cleared of the infectious disease on October 20, she soon found herself out of a home because her apartment had been taken away from her while it was being decontaminated and her landlord refused to rent to her again.
Troh now resides at a church conference center with no possessions and all attempts of her renting another home have been denied.
Although members of Troh’s church are trying to find enough money to purchase a condo so that they can rent it to her, she believes that the stigma surrounding the death of her fiancée has ruined her whole life. All her previous belongings, including carpeting on the floor of her apartment was stripped and burned to prevent the spread of the virus and she is left with only a few plastic bins of photographs and personal items.
Troh works at a nursing home, but since she only earns $9 per hour, she has been unable to find a landlord willing to rent to her four-person household, let alone one who will overlook the fact that she was quarantined during the initial scare.
According to George Mason, pastor of Wilshire Baptist Church where Troh is a member, even though state and federal law prohibits discrimination against buyers or renters based on their seχ, national origin, religion or disability, they cannot find her a home to rent. He added that Troh is an American citizen, but they may have to buy a condo in a last ditch attempt at finding her a place to live.
Mason went on to say that Troh has not only lost the man that she loved, she has lost everything she owns. He added that if buying a condo for her to rent falls through, they may be left with their only available option left open to them and that’s to file a lawsuit against the city for her loss.