Learning Disabilities Problems

Learning Disabilities:
A Bold Vision –or the Ultimate Betrayal?

This site was originally set up to create awareness of the rapidly increasing decimation of Care in the Community and the need for unity of purpose whether carers required respite, residentiaL or day care support It is open to all carers who wish to share their views or seek advice from other contributory sources through use of the Bulletin option. Please feel free to submit potential postings but be aware that these should be relevant, moderate, and respectful within reasonable boundaries.

Day Centre Closed

A Stark and Final Warning

Nothing should have concentrated minds more on the fate of Care in the Community than the exposure by Panorama of the appalling treatment of patients at the Winterbourne View private hospital for people with learning disabilities (Undercover Care: The Abuse Exposed, May 31st, 2011.) That half a century after the introduction of sound Care in the Community residential and day care provision local authorities had been compelled to resort to re-institutionalisation beggars’ belief.

Not surprisingly there was a marked reluctance on the part of those responsible for current policy to acknowledge their personal contributions to this debacle - and a noticeable panic on the part of many to distance themselves from responsibility for the overall decline in service standards.

Was Winterbourne View a one-off, or did it represent the exposure of fallacies that will totally decimate sound Care in the Community policies and hasten the return to unacceptable re-institutionalisation?

Why Is An Internet Debate Necessary Now?

Powerful lobbies of organisations and individuals lacking detailed knowledge and experience in this area of need have successfully manipulated vital policy debates to pursue personal agendas. 'Experts', strong in rhetoric and ambition, but short in commonsense and experience, have misinterpreted the work of genuine pioneers dedicated to achieving rational normalisation. Historical facts and commendable theories have been distorted, with myths perpetuated as facts to implement policies with attractive but unrealistic agendas.

Sadly, other radical elements are reluctant to acknowledge their limitations but prefer to pursue career or commercial gain regardless of the consequences for service user or carer; whilst the failure of the major charitable organisations to effectively address and challenge bizarre policy proposals gives victims little hope of a brighter future.

Parents and carers have been misled, intimidated, brainwashed, or simply through complacency, been compelled to accept policy changes which compromise their own and their adult children's interests. This will continue until all have access to balanced arguments.

Hence the urgent need for an open and informed debate in the public domain - but this will not come easily. Debate regarding this area of social need is suppressed rather than encouraged and the media mainly concerned with the sensational and dramatic show relatively little interest in the long term domestic and social problems of this highly vulnerable section of our society.

Commonsense dictates that a moratorium is placed on further closures of day centres, intentional residential community resources, or respite care facilities until a coherent and comprehensive national policy has been identified and validated.

The media do not want to know; major charities have not really wanted to know; it appears that it is only through the internet that parents/carers might eventually gain an insight into the historical failures that have brought about the current dire situation.

Major charitable organisations have got out of touch with their membership and it will only be when the members become fully aware of the situation that has been developing - and the ultimate potential consequences - that they too will start to unite for the common good and make their voices heard at national level.

This is a wake up call for today - tomorrow will be too late.

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