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When did it become OK to mock disabled children based on who they’re parents are?

7 Jul

Tonight I write this post about an important issue that has really been irritating me these past few weeks.

Being me, I just can’t leave it be and found myself needing to raise the issue here on the blog. 

So, what is it that’s eating me?

Well, sometime ago, last December to be precise, a certain “so called” comedian publicly made fun out of someone less fortunate than himself live on TV. Frankie Boyle went all out and shamefully made Katie price’s disabled son Harvey the butt of his incredibly vile “Jokes”

So, why have I brought it up now? 

The story has yet again been brought to the publics attention through the media as a result of Katie’s new show, ‘Katie, Sticking up for Harvey’ which has been aired on Sky living. I haven’t seen the show, unfortunately I don’t have access to the channel, however I did read a recent article at the, ‘Mail Online

 “Mock me all you like but leave my disabled son alone: Katie Price’s heartfelt denunciation of Frankie Boyle’s vile slur and the TV bosses who defended it.”

This was the headline that drew me to the story that I found myself reading with an open mind. 

Now, I’m not your biggest Katie fan, I don’t really watch much of her stuff unless my sister is about, not because I don’t like the woman, just because I’m not really interested In her world. However when I have seen the show and its had scenes with her son Harvey as well as her other children, she comes across as a loving mother. Now I know she’s no angel and gathering from this article she isn’t claiming to be one, yet the comments I have read from the wider public left me a little dumbfounded. It’s my opinion that many missed the point completely. It all came across as some kind of “We hate Katie Price Campaign!” 

One thing I continued to read over and over again was, “Of course Katie didn’t write this she’s to thick” Come on guys… a) does it bloody matter who wrote the article, it still clearly makes the same important points and b) have you all forgotten, the woman cannot be that “thick” she has made herself a tidy sum of money that will see her children through education and beyond. This brings me onto my next point. Sadly many comments showed a certain amount of resentment, with many asking how can she possibly understand what its like to raise a disabled child purely because she has a nanny! I’m sorry but I feel many parents of disabled children myself included, ask for the outside world to look at us without ignorance! Is Katie price exempt from this? “Stop Milking it” was another comment… “Oh god I hope that person never has to raise a disabled child, the pure cheek and ignorance of such a comment” Sadly I expect Katie expected such comments, still this doesn’t make it right. 

Although I’m aware of people having their own opinions, I found it quite shocking how some even felt it was Ok to condone Frankie Boyle’s sick remarks (to sick for me to repeat). 

Just because Katie price doesn’t have to worry about getting funding for her child’s school placement or getting the council to part with the cash for respite, doesn’t make her any less of a mother to her child, it doesn’t mean she loves him any less then you or I love our children. Most importantly It doesn’t give scum-bag comedians the right to pick on a disabled child like Harvey, surely it doesn’t right? 

To read comments stating Harvey should be hidden and it’s Katie’s own fault for having him in the lime light clearly highlights that we still have some way to go with raising autism awareness. I for one commend Katie price for standing up for her disabled child and speaking out for him! Would I have done the same? Hell yes, I’d done it in a heart beat!

As for both Fankie Boyle and the TV bosses who defended him…. You guys should be utterly & totally ashamed of yourselves! Disability discrimination shouldn’t be happening especially by those in the public eye, its nothing less then disgraceful and I don’t know how you can sleep at night!

Behind closed doors

3 Jun

It’s been a long day & night, I finally rest my head on my pillow a little after 4 am, you would think sleep was imminent. How wrong this was, in-fact little if not any sleep was had at all!

I closed my eyes and there she was, a child trapped in a young woman’s body, doused in water, shaking and screaming out for her mother!

It was an image that many would now find trapped at the front of their mind, unable to find its way out.

Some hours before I had sat sobbing as I watched the broadcast of BBC ones Panorama! It was deeply shocking, horrifying  & incredible heartbreaking TV.

If this was the case, then why did I watch it, why not turn it off? As hard as it was to witness the horrors unfolding at Winterbourne View… It was something that needed to be seen!

Now warm & safe in my bed I was hunted by the realisation of the situation. How many more were there… How many more care homes are operating in such a horrendous manner? We already know that Winterbourne are part of the Castlebeck chain of independently ran care homes with an estimated turnover of ninety-million pounds! Then there are the undiscovered, the thought chills me to the bone!

Within my head there are so many thoughts, questions that turn my stomach with fear.

How many more unqualified, under-trained monsters are being given the title support worker or carer?

How many whistle blowers have raised concerns and seen them swept under the carpet?

How many past complaints to the ‘Care Quality Commission‘ (CQC) have been ignored, emails deleted without a second thought for those that may be in danger? I wonder how many complaints will continue to be ignored?

How many cases of abuse have been missed at the hands of the CQC due to poor inspections of care homes?

How Many victims young & old, who are laid in their beds , will wake to the hands of evil as it grabs ahold of them and drags them from their feet?

MY GUESS IS… TO MANY!

As a mother, a human being my arms longed to hold them young victims, to keep them safe from harm. With every act of torture my heart sank a little more, the anger within me tore at my gut as I felt powerless, so bloody powerless!

Some may say that to have anger within yourself is a bad thing but I’m sure those that like me sat and watched that report, feel exactly the same way I do. The only good that can come from such anger is to channel it into something positive such as change!

Its well documented that social care has been worse hit by the government cuts, leaving the most vulnerable in frightening situations. This is anything from children with special educational needs not getting the support needed; individuals with mental heath problems facing the stress of reassessments leading to the loss of incapacity benefit; the closure of support groups & day centres and those in care homes. Yet the government  fail to address such issues despite the compiling evidence that keeps on growing. Things shouldn’t have to get this far before action is taken, yet somehow it always does.

The media has brought about some pretty disturbing headlines off late. Although I am In the uttermost agreement that those seen abusing the young  residents residing at Winterbourne view are total scum that in my opinion should not have been released on bail, we have to look at the bigger picture.

The CQC, local authority and management of Castlebeck have a lot of explaining to do. As mentioned the CQC had not only inspected Winterbourne view more than once, but also failed to respond to the whistle-blower who is reported to have contacted them on three occasions.

The Local Authority use the tax payers money to fund placements at ‘Winterbourne View’ for  young adults with autism, learning disabilities and challenging behaviour. With a weekly fee of up to £3,500 (that and the fact they have a duty of care), you would have thought the Local Authority would carry out all the appropriate checks before splashing the cash.

Last but not least you have the management of the establishment. Are you telling me that this was unknown to them? Does this included the upstairs locked corridor with bedrooms either side, no CCTV but a security system at each end! Does this not ring alarm bells? This is an area that holds the rule, “NO GUEST ALLOWED” Yet In a statement Castlebeck said, “We are deeply distressed by the completely unacceptable and appalling behaviour of a small number of our employees at one of our facilities…” (Full response) Castlebeck itself is owned by a Jersey-based investment vehicle called Lydian Capital. It is said that Lydian Capital is backed by a group of Irish tycoons led by JP McManus, John Magnier and Dermot Desmond.

The guardian reported,“Castlebeck is not the only care home business owned by the group. A Jersey investment vehicle called Grove Limited – chaired by fellow Irishman, Denis Brosnan – also counts Desmond, McManus and Magnier among its investors. It controls the Barchester Healthcare empire of more than 200 homes, making it the second largest in the UK behind Bupa and Four Seasons Healthcare.” For me this is terrifying news.

The latest report given by the guardian tells how this isn’t the first time the quality of care at Castlebeck facilities have come under scrutiny. With the mention of a death that may have been party caused by restraint (an open verdict was given) There was also an alleged sexual assault that was not reported by staff to management nor the  police. This alongside smelly dirty accommodation that had poor infection control was discovered during an unannounced inspection (which clearly shows the need for such measures) The guardian have named the semi-secure hospital/care home for men with learning disabilities & autism as, ‘Cedar Vale’ .

 Was the place closed down? It would seem not! Castlebeck claim the problem has now been addressed…

As a mother to a child on the autism spectrum I found the report extremely upsetting, yet it’s my opinion that any half decent human being would feel this way following a programme so direful it shocked the UK and beyond!

Yes, we need a more effective inspection regime and no we should not employ those who are under-qualified or have not undergone the appropriate training needed to care for those with complex needs. 

WHY IN GODS NAME IS THIS PLACE STILL OPEN?

Correct me if I’m wrong, When health and safety inspections are carried out in food courts, restaurants and take away outlets, given they are not up to scratch they are closed down! Why isn’t it the same for a place that has a duty of care to those with complex needs and autism? I struggle to find any explanation as to why the place wasn’t and still isn’t closed down! There is no need for talk or pending investigations, Panorama provide unquestionable evidence! What more is needed

The only answer I can come up with is that the NHS/Local authority have nowhere to place the residents from the home if they are forced to move them. At the end of the day it all comes down to money and its likely no-one wants to foot the bill, they never do!

Winterbourne View is a place that needs closing down for the sake of the residents and their families.

So come people are we going to stand back & allow any more shame on our country, or are we going to do something about it? Remember two voices are better than one so, lets start talking! 

Did you watch the Panorama report on Tuesday 31st May or see it in the news? 

Do you want to try to help change the system?

Do you think the care home in question should remain open?

Maybe you just want to have your voice heard by speaking up for the vulnerable  

There are a number of things you can do to help prompt change!

  • Sign the online petition, created by the National Autistic Society (NAS);
  • Contact your local MP (Find your MP with this twitter list);
  • Leave me a comment;
  • Join the discussions on Twitter using the #Panorama;
  • Blog  about it and Link up to other blogs;
  • Join in with today’s (Friday 3rd June) tweet storm Friday. Just log on to twitter & tweet your comments using the tag: #aaukcampagin;
  • Join one of the many facebook groups.

Bloggers Reactions 

These bloggers tell it like it is!

Watch the BBC Panorama Report: Here

THREE SICK BULLIES TORTURE TEEN WITH ASPERGERS, AND GET AWAY WITH IT!

17 Oct

Reading the news often makes me feel utterly sick and feels me with total terror, so I do try to avoid it as often as seemingly possible. But its everywhere you don’t even need to tune into a news station on the television or radio, pick up a paper or search the internet, because networks such as the all to popular Twitter and good old Facebook have become news broadcasters in their own right. It’s considered a fact that these social networking sites give us the news before its even aired on the national news! More then likely before the journalist has even got his foot through the door of the all to often “Crime Scene” So I guess the term “Seemingly Possible” was a draft dizzy expression to make!

So yesterday I’m trolling through my Facebook, like to many of us do! Only to come across a disgusting, stomach wrenching news-feed updated by one of my favourite pages “The National Autistic Society!” The, Headline reads:

“This week, three men who brutally attacked a 17 year-old with Asperger syndrome were let off with just 80 hours of community service.”

Clicking on the link provided I found myself faced with total shock horror. This countries justice system was truly confirmed the joke we all suspected it to be. Believe me, I’m not just ranting because this boy who was so brutally attacked in a sickening three day ordeal was on the autism spectrum (Though yes this is a major part of it!) But I would also rant if the person subjected to this degree of torture was what societies describes as, “Neurotypical” However this crime was inflicted on a person who was vulnerable and “disabled” Making this one ghastly disability hate crime!

” WARNING! LEAVE NOW IF YOU DON’T WISH TO READ JUST HOW HORRIFIC THIS ATTACK ACTUALLY WAS!”

The three sick & twisted criminals known as Jack Bolton, Andrew Griffin, and Nathan Marshall, all 18 years of age, from Manchester (uk) & known to the police, subjected their 17 year old autistic terrified victim through an unendurable attack, why filming it on their mobile phones. They filmed themselves proudly torturing their teenager victim. The victim who has a diagnosis of Aspergers (a form of autism) was treated in such an inhuman way that it is a total disbelieve that they were not sent to jail to rot. The Scumful three pelted their victim with dog mess, scratched his limbs with sandpaper, kicked and jumped on his head, beat him with a tennis racket and then forced him to drink vodka and gin until he passed out. A National Newspaper The Daily Mail wrote:

Mobile phone footage showed the yobs laughing and joking as they made him endure other abuse and, in a final humiliating assault, they applied adhesive tape to his genital area before ripping the tape off.

It is in my opinion that after reading this story, posted by the Daily Mail and the National Autistic Society’s Facebook page “Judge Jonathan Geake” who imposed this despicable insulting “so called sentence” of  three-month curfews and ordered them to carry out 80 hours’ unpaid community work as ‘an intensive alternative to custody’ is a prime example of  what our justice system is today. “AN UTTER JOKE!”

The victim will live with this horrid disturbing attack for the rest of his live. My guess is he has been left with no confidence or trust in the human race. Instead he is left with just a body crippled by fear. How will this teenage boy ever live a full and independent life now? Yet these beast are allowed to roam our streets, serving a mere 80hrs community service. 80hrs is just a little over three days. Is it bad enough they were not sent to rot in their cell but instead be given a sentence of painting youth clubs or even worse maybe in our schools amongst  our vulnerable children some likely with Aspergers the same condition as their victim! Yet this so called community service order, that is an insult to the word punishment is for a period not even totally four days in total! (If added together that is.) Gosh I give my children a harder punishment for fighting with one another. I’m not stating I know what and where such community service will be served! I’m merely stating that we as a nation see it all to bloody often. Giving something back to the community! Is a term used all to often within our failing justice system. “Yer right” Are they planing to give that young victim his life back? Give him the confidence to go out and meet people, walk the streets free from fear of unprovoked attacks from monsters like these scum-bag offenders? “NO, I THOUGHT NOT!”

The Daily mail online state that Senior police officers and an MP have branded Judge Jonathan Geake sentence “a joke” and like the National Autistic Society, have called for the sentence to be reviewed. The National Autistic Society has launched a campaign where you can get involved. By clicking on the link The national autistic society above, you can tell Judge Jonathan Geake just how wrong he got it! Or visit The Daily Mail Online for the full story including the mug-shots of these low life scum bags who are free to roam our streets and a picture of the “wonderful” Judge him self Jonathan Geake.

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