Learning Disabilities & Autism News

Mencap reacts to the Government’s response to the Health and Social Care Committee’s new report examining treatment of people with a learning disability and / or autism

Today, the government responded to the Health and Social Care Committee’s latest report on the treatment of autistic people and people with learning disabilities. There are currently over 2,000 people who have a learning disability and/or autism who are locked away in hospitals at increased risk of abuse and neglect.

The government say they share the Committee’s conviction that people with a learning disability and autistic people should be able to live an ordinary life in their community, in their own home and with the right support in place.

Reacting to the government’s response, Dan Scorer, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at Mencap, said:

“The government’s response to the Health and Social Care Committee report has not addressed many unanswered questions such as how the government will ensure the right community support is developed.

“We want people with a learning disability and/or autism to have access to the right care in their community to prevent inappropriate admissions and to get people out of in-patient settings. While we hope the reforms within the draft Mental Health Bill will deliver much needed changes to the system – the impact of these reforms won’t be felt for years.

“We welcome the government’s agreement to remove the financial disincentives that prevent people being able to get the right support in the community. However, we are yet to see any plan on how to tackle this.

“This is a human rights scandal – we need clear actions, targets and monitoring to develop the right community support, prevent admissions and get people back to their communities.”

Edel Harris

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