I watched the BBC news this evening and saw for myself, the shocking pictures that were filmed, by an undercover reporter, at the Winterbourne View care home. The news story and (beware: distressing) pictures are here .
On a simple, human level, it’s inconceivable that people who are supposed to CARE, can possibly behave that way to anyone, but in this case, a number of “individuals” (I don’t want to call them humans), felt they had free reign to beat, verbally abuse, and generally torture, some of the most vulnerable adults in our society.
As a result of my family situation, watching that report was both utterly heartbreaking and terrifying. Thing is – I have a Sister…..and she’s autistic. Our Dad’s been her sole carer ever since our Mum died a few years ago but Dad’s getting older and there will come a time when my Sis will have to go into full time care. Every now and again, my Sister goes into temporary respite care to give our Dad a break but thankfully, she actually enjoys where she goes.
Now, let’s not get things too out of proportion. I’ve no doubt that the type of behaviour shown in the BBC report is very, very rare but the Care Quality Commission MUST get its house in order and ensure that nothing like this can be allowed to happen ever again on such a scale. When whistleblowers make complaints (as happened in this case, even before the BBC Panorama filming), proper investigations must be made and the basic, human rights of those patients and families must be upheld and treated with priority and respect.
I love my Sister, and had she been treated in the way those poor people in that Winterbourne home had been……well….I’m not sure I’d be responsible for my actions.
In a radio report on the case, I heard the distraught reaction of one set of parents on being shown the footage of their daughter’s treatment. I was getting ready for work but I felt as though I’d been kicked in the stomach.
NO family should EVER have to go through anything like that.
My thoughts and sympathies are with the familes affected in the Winterbourne case. I hope the justice system delivers to them the results they deserve and expect.