Last night, as we sat in our living rooms watching TV, Panorama exposed the appalling daily experiences for people in a large mental health hospital.
Our thoughts are with the individuals and their families who have had to (and may well continue to) experience entirely unacceptable treatment as well as the ongoing consequences of it, and all the other families who are worried that their relatives experiences may be the same. Everyone will rightly be outraged – but who will be held to account and when will the systemic change be delivered? Who is ensuring that the individuals we saw and their families are getting the support they need- including independent information and advice and legal support?
It seems that Panorama reporters are able to listen to whistleblowers and find and expose these issues, and yet NHS England, commissioners, local authorities, safeguarding leads and the regulator cannot.
Eleven years ago, after the Winterbourne View Hospital scandal, care was meant to be transformed. Large, segregated, “closed” institutions were meant to be abandoned, with alternative local high quality and specialist community support and services put in place. The Government and NHS England has for the last 11 years repeatedly said they are “committed” to transforming care and providing high quality support but last night we saw clear evidence that commitment is insufficient. They must explain why they have so far failed to deliver and exactly what they are going to do right now to address that.
Support from the CBF
Resources on our website
The CBF has information available for anyone who has concerns about the issues raised which can be found here:
Family Support Service
If you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this statement, you can call the Family Support Service on 0300 666 0126
Or email us at email@example.com
We are open at the following times:
Monday – Thursday: 9am – 5pmFriday: 9am – 3pm
We offer information about challenging behaviour to anyone who provides support to a child, young person or adult with a severe learning disability. We can also signpost you to other specialist organisations and sources of information.
Please note we are a small support service so you may not be able to get support straight away. We will support families with urgent concerns as a priority.
Professionals are also welcome to contact the CBF.