A Tory-run Norfolk council has forced a disabled woman living with multiple sclerosis (MS) into a care home against her will. Now, her daughter is campaigning for her to be released and let home. However, they need your help with a ‘Twitter storm’ to try and make the council listen.
Living with MS, but forced into a care home
Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) is supporting Linda, whose mum Christine lives with MS. Tory-run Norfolk County Council and its adult social care services forced Christine into a care home – against her will. So, Linda, and her daughter Amelia (pictured) is campaigning to get her mum home. There’s a X (formerly Twitter) storm on Friday 20 October from 7:30-9pm.
DPAC put a statement from Christine on its website. The Canary is reprinting it in full below:
My Mum, Christine Lee, was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 25 years ago and has been a full time wheelchair user for several years. She was forced into residential care by Norfolk County Council (NCC) over a year ago following a stay in hospital due to a medication issue. Her care needs had not changed.
Before this she had been living happily in her flat for which she had (and still has) an assured tenancy. Her flat has been fully adapted for her needs (hoists, wet room etc.) and she has lived there for over a decade. Care is provided by on site care provider Norse Care who are owned by NCC. They provide care 24/7and it is claimed they meet low, medium and high care needs.
She was told she would only be in the residential home for a maximum of 28 days for assessment. NCC put her in a care home owned by Norse which was miles from her friends, sister and town she had lived all her life. She was completely isolated and not taken out once, her independence completely destroyed.
The reality is that because my Mum needs more than 13 hours care per week NCC have forced her into residential and have refused care in her home. Mum needs basic personal care only and has full capacity.
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In August Mum was evicted from the Norse care home because I spoke out. She is now in another care home despite telling many NCC staff constantly over the last year that she wants to go home.
The last year has been horrific. Getting any information has taken months and the dishonesty has been staggering.
Mum has not been listened to in any way.
‘Bullied and distressed’
Other issues are:
- Waited 11 months for NCC OT [occupational therapy] assessment. OT refused to visit Mum’s flat to review equipment.
- SW ignored Mum’s requests and signed authority to act form for advocacy to be present at all meetings. She visited Mum when on her own and was dishonest and manipulative.
- Mum not involved with Care Plan.
- Mum had no idea what the SW was taking to panel and when. We were told after the event that she had taken options of staying at the residential in which Mum was isolated or returning home with an over inflated care package which was not as per her assessment (the cost would have been £3500 per week!). Residential was chosen.
- The new care home is cheaper than the one they owned but they now want top ups. This was not mentioned before Mum moved. NCC claim they didn’t know costs before the moving date. I have emails from the care home sent to NCC that they did. Mum could face another eviction.
- NCC have spent 5 months avoiding and refusing a subject access request.
- They have agreed an independent SW, but he is an ex-employee of NCC and is again ignoring Mum’s requests for advocacy.
- NCC management have refused to meet with Mum and family.
There have been many more incidents when we have felt totally bullied and distressed. They are relentless.
Mum just wants to go home and feels she shouldn’t be in a residential home just because she has a disability. She misses her independence, home, friends and sister.
Support the Twitter storm
The issue is being covered by the BBC on Friday 20th October. Doing all of this is definitely outside my comfort zone, but I know it supports Mum and all those who have been treated so unfairly.
Please can I ask for your support with a Twitter storm to @NorfolkCC and @NorfolkTories between 7.30-9pm on Friday 20th October.
Hashtag tweets of:
If you can get involved, please do. You can read more on Christine’s story here.
Featured image via Christine Lee’s family
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