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Odds, Sods & Bills

July 28, 2014

Feeling a bit wobbly at the moment. We had a serious storm early this morning. I was upstairs on the computer – Steven was downstairs watching the 2000 Christmas edition of Top of the Pops. Suddenly a massive bolt of lightning hit the house and all the power went off. It was eerily quiet. After about 15 minutes I’d sorted the fuse box out but it looks like the storm has killed our router. At the same time, I noticed water coming through my bedroom ceiling and down the wall. A couple of cracks started to appear in the wall.

That set off three hours of totally pointless phone calls. Is everything sub, sub, sub,sub contracted out these days? There is such a maze of outsourcing I find it impossible to work out who is responsible. Talk Talk clearly have done some serious outsourcing to goodness knows where. I couldn’t understand a word the woman was saying to me in the 70 minute conversation but upshot was all her troubleshooting led to nothing and I need an engineer – the earliest he can come is Saturday. Exactly the same with the Housing Association. Tenancy manager? Property management team? Contracted roofer? Who knows? Their best advice until they can sort who is responsible is to keep Steven away from the plugs. Cheers. I’ve come away for my fortnightly respite night with no idea if I’ll have a ceiling when I get home.

But every cloudburst has a silver lining and I have to say that the start of the #LBBill Facebook group has been just awesome. I’ve never known a group have such a diverse membership, so in just two days the whole collective ethos of the Bill is being played out in the group. So far we’ve had people with learning disabilities join, lots of interested family members, carers, legal people, journalists, media, activists, providers, advocacy groups, housing folk. They’re all pitching up. And its jolly hard work keeping up with all the ideas that are coming forward. All the engagement, humanity, and common sense of the #justiceforlb campaign is continuing in people’s determination to see the Bill happen.

And today of all days, it couldn’t be more telling. Some of you may be familiar with the case of Claire Dyer, who since September has been under section in a hospital in Wales. Despite being under section, she is allowed home most days, with hardly any of the behaviors that the hospital are using to support their plan to move Claire away. Today, Claire and her family were told the devastating news that she is being moved, on Wednesday, to a medium secure unit in Brighton. For assessment. 100s of miles from her home. No best interests assessment. No plan for what the treatment will be and how long the assessment will last. Another autistic person wrenched from everything she knows and helps her feel safe.

Whilst Claire packs her suitcase, the Bubb group had their 2nd meeting this morning. Also hot of the press is the news that the Winterbourne JIP is no more, replaced by the Transforming Care Winterbourne Assurance Group. More transformation. Never have I felt less reassured by an assurance group. And Southern Health NHS Trust continue to make the Ryan’s family hell with their total contempt for all notions of human decency.

Boy oh boy, do we need this Bill tomorrow.


From → Social Care

  1. The worrying thing besides her being so far from home is that there are only two places this could be – you can Google “medium secure unit Sussex” and find this out. One is The Dene which is outside Burgess Hill – that’s a private mental health secure unit for women although it takes NHS patients. The other is Hellingly, which is on the site of an old Victorian asylum near Hailsham (much nearer Eastbourne than Brighton) which is an NHS mixed unit and that makes no mention of learning disabilities on their website. Both units take people who are offenders, including those remanded on suspicion of serious crimes like murder. Hellingly also takes sex offenders. Neither of them are remotely suitable for Claire but they may have accepted her on the basis that she doesn’t really have autism or a learning disability (which is what certain ‘experts’ have claimed). The Swansea staff have plainly paid no attention to what’s best for Claire; they want rid of her by any means necessary.

  2. anonymous permalink

    Please please do not forget other person’s that have a disability. Learning disabled people are not the only ones suffering……..That all person’s does not matter which end of the spectrum of disability one is at it is all vulnerable persons. Problem is that it is only LD families that are pro active, and I am some what on my own……Yet find similarities with you all………..

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