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Our response to Bill Mumford's resignation from the Joint Improvement Board

Jan Tregelles, chief executive of the Royal Mencap Society, and Vivien Cooper, chief executive of the Challenging Behaviour Foundation, respond to Bill Mumford’s resignation from the Joint Improvement Board.

“We support Bill Mumford in his decision to step down as programme lead for the Joint Improvement Board following the latest safeguarding incident and investigation at a McIntyre service. It is crucial that this incident receives his full attention at this time. The priority must be to ensure that the individuals are safe and receiving appropriate care and support, and that their families are also supported.

“The work the Joint Improvement Programme was established to do still remains worryingly incomplete, with the June deadline to support people with a learning disability to move back to their communities having long passed. It is fundamental that the resignation of Bill Mumford does not further delay a vital programme of work that is already well behind schedule.

“It is therefore an absolute priority that leaders at the Department of Health, NHS England and the Local Government Association work together to meet the important commitment they gave to vulnerable individuals and their families back in 2012 by delivering a step change in transforming support for children and adults with a learning disability and behaviour that challenges.

Steve Sollars, whose son Sam was in Winterbourne View for two years up until 2010, says:

“Three years ago, we all watched on our televisions as a number of men and women with a learning disability were beaten, restrained and emotionally tormented at Winterbourne View. The complete lack of progress made since then to move vulnerable people out of places like Winterbourne View is making a complete mockery of the horrendous abuse my son and many others experienced – abuse that we know vulnerable people are still experiencing today.

“How many more people with a learning disability need to experience cruelty at the hands of those who are trusted to care for them before the Government will make this programme a priority? How many more care scandals need to hit the headlines? We, the families, want to see this important programme of work fast-tracked and we want to advise the Government every step of the way.”  

For more information please contact Lisa Gilbert, PR Officer on 020 7696 6950, Lisa.Gilbert@mencap.org.uk

Download our full press statement here.

Bill Mumford's statement is here.

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