The week of protests prompted by London’s mother, Leo, led to protests across the country in various cities. There was also a meeting mid-week hosted by MP Helen Hayes which led to this early day motion sponsored by her and 5 other MPs with support from others. Lobby your MP to sign up.

The situation at Whorlton Hall should never have been allowed but these closed institutions together with insufficient scrutiny and powerless vulnerable people miles away from home, effectively disenfranchised and denied their human rights, inevitably invites untrained people who can easily abuse their position. We know that such Assessment and Treatment Units can’t ‘treat’ challenging behaviour whose causes will be rooted in their lives – not outside them.It makes them more anxious and powerless and is more likely to make people respond negatively. We also know that a major cause has been the withdrawal of local expert community services by Health and cuts by Local Authorities due to the level of squeeze and cuts.  In the ’80s onwards, resettlement from the long-stay hospitals was managed by front-loading funding to develop both communtiy services and the right support for people. The wasted lives and resources can’t be justified, but what does it take for any Government to understand no change will happen unless they commit the community resources as well as the funding for bespoke resettlement for individuals, who for the main part will have been more damaged by their experience in an ATU?

Decisive action is now needed urgently – and our MPs should be accountable for the continued lack. Let’s ensure that they both know what does work and support this early day  motion Homes not Hospitals motion