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Charles H
Jan 08 2018 20:28 PM Post #275
Location : Base UK

Charles H
Today I started what will probably be my last serious attempt to generate a meaningful debate that could restore sanity to policy direction for people with learning disabilities. But - do not hold your breath.
What Scope are now proposing is in parallel with the promises I saw unfolding 30 years ago which I tried to expose as irrational at the time, and have continued to try to expose and modify ever since - without success.
Below is a copy of emails sent to all members of the A.PPG for LD.
As a long term independent campaigner for people with learning disabilities I feel I must draw attention of all members of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Learning Disability to a posting I have circulated across a number of outlets and copied to Scope.
Just reflecting upon a few of the painful events of the 2017 brings sharply into focus the trauma and suffering that has arisen from deficiencies in care in the community policies that show little sign of easing.
The fact that Scope are embarking on a new strategy goes a long way towards providing a rational explanation. Scope are victims of information deprivation denying it the opportunity to learn from past care in the community history. Regrettably, Scope are not pioneering, but repeating the fatal errors that were made 30 years ago. Ample evidence suggests that a spiral of decline set in motion at that time eventually culminated in the Winterbourne View scandal and the debacle that care in the community has become.
The efforts of a few misguided individuals with insular personal agendas, ensured a successful evolutionary policy introduced by humanitarian pioneers with immense hands-on experience in the 1960s/70s/80s has been airbrushed out of social history. Political correctness in the form of extreme ‘normalisation’ and ‘personalisation’ dogmas has ruled supreme.
The complexity of the immense task of meeting the residential and day care needs of people with learning disabilities has been grievously underestimated. It will remain so until a true record of how those in need of services and their carers have been insidiously misled for decades is exposed in the public domain.
There is an urgent need for the restoration of an equitable, achievable, rational, national strategy based upon the evolutionary process introduced and proving successful in the 1980s. There is need for an explanation of how irrational dogmas that defied common-sense remained unchallenged and became accepted as components of ongoing policies. There is need to question the competence and experience in this field of the advisers to whom the Government has turned for guidance since the real experts were phased out in the1980s. There is need to recognise that the complexity of the needs of this vulnerable section of our society is so vast it can only be met when addressed by suitably qualified, experienced, and insightful leaders. There is a need for a Minister dedicated to supporting such leaders.
Charities and influential academics have abysmally failed service users and their carers who are now facing a bleak outlook and are in despair. Members of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Learning Disability are the only hope these people have that the 2014 Care Act will fulfil its promise to provide “Health and high quality care for all, now and for future generations”.
Yours sincerely
Charles Henley.
LEARNING DISABILITIES: The Rise and Potential Demise of Structured Day Services for Adults with Learning Disabilities 1955 -2005 IBSN 9 781899 499 199
LEARNING DISABILITIES: Bold Visions: the shortcut to inclusion – or the inevitable route to Winterbourne View IBSN 9781 899 499 687
WINTERBOURNE VIEW: The Betrayal of the Innocent ISBN 978-0992728663
(Copies sent to the H of C library)
For further information please refer to my website:
Jan 08 2018 14:58 PM Post #274
Location : Germany, Berlin Schoneberg

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Jan 08 2018 14:52 PM Post #273
Location : Austria, Neustift

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Jan 04 2018 17:05 PM Post #271
Location : Base

My apologies for having fallen back on the continuity of my "Delusion of lnclusion' o postings , but these will now be returning following this reflection 0n 2017 3rd January, 2018
So, once again carers enter yet another year questioning whether their needs will be recognised and their disadvantaged family members will eventually receive the appropriate level and quality of service which they deserve. A short reflection on just a few notable events of 2017 does not inspire great confidence.
Reverberations of the Winterbourne View scandal struck home when a Channel 4 Despatches documentary of the 1st March 2017: ‘Under Lock and Key’, addressed problems arising at St. Andrews, a hospital which has more than 50 wards and 659 beds.
Two other shocking reports in June drew attention other disturbing aspects of service provision and the vital need for caring and valued staff.
Also reminiscent of Winterbourne View, Bristol Crown Court on June 6t,h saw the sentencing of people with responsibility for the care of people with learning disabilities imprisoned for “organised and systematic abuse” of disabled residents. The owners and staff of the Atlas Project Team were accused of running a culture where “systematic neglect” was the norm. They were paid up to £4000 per person per week to provide care for these vulnerable people.
The end of June saw the publication of ‘A Trade in People’. This an interesting and detailed review of the distribution and availability of specialist residential resources for people with challenging learning disabilities published by The Centre for Disability Research, Lancaster University. It considers the financial implications and the stress that economising imposes on families attempting to maintain close relationships.
Not least, the taking over of 200 NHS and local government commitments, including statutory obligations such as Adult Social Care, by Virgin Care from Somerset authorities spelt the end of any equitable national policy in the foreseeable future.
Perhaps, most sadly, was the news that Scope, one of the few big charitable organisations upon whom carers could look for support for a return to rational policies, have abandoned the policy of providing a continuum of reliable residential and day care services. Far from embarking on an innovative pioneering exercise, ample evidence suggests Scope has been misled into following in the footsteps of the numerous failed dogmas that have decimated support services over the past 30 years. An appalling catalogue of setbacks and suffering can be linked to the charlatans who influenced policy direction despite lacking adequate validated research.
Although I have had direct contact with the government official lead for the disabled over the past few months absolutely nothing has been learnt as the government continues to take advice from the wrong people. My thoughts and thanks go out to those determined carers who support any efforts to do something about it.
Dec 26 2017 15:28 PM Post #270
Location : Switzerland, Wigoltingen

Why users still make use of to read news papers when in this technological globe everything is presented on web?
Charles H
Dec 10 2017 11:59 AM Post #269
Location : Base UK

Thank you, Brigitte, for your kind comments. I have been a little slow to add comments recently but there is still a lot to come that I hope will interest you. Your posting is the first to come from Poland and is very welcome.
Dec 09 2017 22:59 PM Post #268
Location : Poland, Katowice

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Charles H
Dec 05 2017 11:05 AM Post #260
Location : Base UK

Dear Arlette, thank you for your posting and comments. I am sorry but I do not seem to have received your last posting as yours is a nice name and I am sure I would have recalled and acknowledged it.
I do not know if the following will be helpful. When I am writing my contributions I try to write as if I am talking to each reader personally who has shown me the honour of taking the time to read what I have written.
I feel strongly about my campaign which is on behalf of people with learning disabilities and their carers who cannot speak up for themselves and are being treated very badly. Not many ordinary people are aware of their problems so I try to make my postings basically very simple - but accurate - to spread a wider understanding of their problems. I also try to provide continuity that makes up a real life story, and not to leave too big a gap between follow ups.
If you believe in something you want to share then you must enjoy writing your blogs and do not give up if you do not get an immediate response. I have been writing blogs for many years, but it is only this year that I have had a noticeable response. Strangely, this has not been from the UK where I am based, but from around the world: USA, France, Germany, Switzerland, Norway, Netherlands, Australia, Canada, Brazil, Austria, Iceland, Brussels, Denmark. Their comments are all recorded in the Bulletin on my website.Yours is the first from Italy.
So just relax and enjoy writing your own blogs - you may never know who will eventually read them but you will have had some joy from putting your thoughts into wider circulation. Best wishes
Dec 05 2017 7:08 AM Post #259
Location : Italy, Otranto

Hmm it appears like your blog ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I'll just sum it up what I had written and say, I'm thoroughly enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog writer but I'm still new to the whole thing. Do you have any helpful hints for inexperienced blog writers? I'd definitely appreciate it.
Charles H
Nov 22 2017 23:19 PM Post #258
Location : Base UK

First posted on Facebook 27th April 2017
It is interesting to note that despite wide circulation amongst carers groups only 79 people responded to this appeal for support!

To: Social spokespersons for political parties
Restore justice for the disabled

Campaign created by
Charles Henley

Reverse current direction of care in the community policies
Why is this important?
Recent Channel 4 'Under lock and Key' documentary confirms that rational care in the community is being turned back half a century
Restore justice for the disabled
The coming election is an opportunity for carers to pressurize their potential MPs for dramatic change to humanitarian policies - but not only carers, but the general population at large who do not realize the intense pressure that their neighbours are under.
In my line of work, learning disabilities, I have seen this worthy section of our society cheated out of the quality of service they need and deserve.
Carers, desperately need the support of the general public, for parental commitment is not just for the relatively short time that we fortunate ones experience with children who eventually fly from the nest to lead their own independent lives, but for a whole lifetime. This can be into their 70s and 80s, when, sadly, too often they live in hope that their children will die before they do.
These people all, to a greater or lesser degree, need the stability and continuity of specialist and structured input regardless of location; there should be no post code lottery.
Many years ago, for a very brief time they had the prospect of a fulfilling service influenced by caring humanitarian professionals and implemented by dedicated practitioners. But this was not to last as influence and implementation of policies was taken over by local authorities and self-proclaimed experts who pressurized a one-size-fits all model of extreme inclusion.
The contention of the extremists was that relationships between people with profound or severe disabilities were of an inferior nature and against their best interests. They were not ‘valued’ people and would never become ‘valued’ people unless they were involved in community activities with ‘normal’ people and could learn from their role models.
However well-intentioned, this ‘normalisation’ concept was out of touch with reality. The overwhelming majority of these people were already within communities where they were ‘highly valued’. Their special needs were being met whilst they were encouraged to broaden out into the wider world if they had the wish and capability to benefit from it.
In pursuing their own agendas, the extreme inclusion lobby broke up happy and contented residential and day care community groups, deprived them of lifelong friendships, and plunged their lives and those of their carers into lives of loneliness and uncertainty. No effective research had been carried out, the extreme inclusion policy was based on unrealistic wishful thinking.
At the top end of the scale, the more able people became deprived of opportunities of sheltered employment in local authority workshops and Remploy which closed because the extremists contended that working with other disabled people “stigmatised and segregated them from the community”! Nobody fought harder to keep these places open than the people with disabilities who worked in them!
But nothing has been learnt, for the original flawed one-size-fits-all dogma has been superseded by yet another one-size-fits-all proposal that does not stand up to close scrutiny - the bespoke personal budget care package.
This would be a reasonable option for many if it was affordable but it is public knowledge that financial support for adult social services is under extreme pressure and cuts are already being made extensively. If, in fairness, this option would be available to the 1.4 million people all in need of support of some description, the cost of meeting demand is unimaginable. The highest amount I have seen on record is a budget of £650,000 per year to meet one person’s individual expectations.
Current policies are not solving current problems; there is already a lack of appropriate community support services available to enable about 1500 people locked into NHS care to be freed into the community within the next two years.
Billions of pounds have been poured into a deep black hole over the recent decades because policies have been influenced and implemented by more than 120 town hall administrators - this has now been extended by a substantial number of Commissioners.
The impending election offers an outstanding opportunity put an end to this utter waste, and demonstrate that a new government will put humanitarian values above party political needs. All levels of disability are under pressure and need consideration. There are no easy answers, but for those with learning disabilities historical experience has shown that there have been better solutions.
50,000 people were liberated from institutions when policies were influenced and implemented by experienced and caring leaders and practitioners. This period of development has been airbrushed out of history - but it needs to come back. There are still people capable of bringing it back and leading a single service agency with its own Minister that could revitalise the outlook for people with learning disabilities at all levels.
The next seven weeks provide an opportunity to assess the calibre of those seeking election or re-election. If we cannot get a cross-party mandate right for the most profoundly disadvantaged and deserving people in our society, what hope is there for the rest?

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