A Mitchelton woman is calling for more support for people suffering from compulsive hoarding.

Jessie Harlow lives in a Housing Commission unit scheduled to undergo general maintenance.

But due to her addiction access to her home is near impossible.

Olivia Rogers reports.


Jesse Harlow needs help.

And she’s not the only one, compulsive hoarding is increasing, often stemming from deep rooted psychological issues.

In Ms Harlow’s case, a lifetime of abuse, has left her with an abundance of damaging emotions.

Jessie Harlow, Compulsive Hoarder: “Sometimes I find that when I start to get rid of things I get anxiety and panic attacks and go out and get more. I think a lot of it is to do with staying hidden, keeping people away, being safe.”

The Department of Housing and Public Works provides the unit and conducts regular home inspections.

She’s has been instructed to clean up to allow access to repaint the unit.

Jessie Harlow, Compulsive Hoarder: “I totally understand where they’re coming from. It’s just so difficult. I’ve tried, I’ve hired a storage unit and it’s now full of things.”

Jessie knows she needs help to clean up her act but with the housing commission breathing down her neck, it’s only adding fuel to the fire.

She lives in the unit with her two adult children who’ve been greatly affected by her addiction.

Michael Harlow, Son: “As much as mum tries to shove stuff into my room I don’t tend to allow it, so it keeps things a lot a lot more stable.”

Jessie Harlow, Compulsive Hoarder: “It’s really strained my relationship with my children. They virtually live in their room. We eat on the stairs because as you can see you can’t see the chairs.”

She says while people will offer to help her physically clean up, there needs to be more emotional support for people suffering the condition.

Olivia Rogers, QUT News.