Letter to the Guardian

The Guardian has reported (Guardian Society 21 May – http://thesocialissue.com/author/saba-salman/) on the preventable death of Connor Sparrowhawk (nicknamed LB or Laughing Boy). Connor was placed in a small, highly staffed, specialist assessment and treatment unit for people with learning disabilities (LD). He had an epileptic seizure and, unobserved by staff, drowned in the bath. The #JusticeforLB #107days campaigns are about getting justice for Connor and changing the status of people with learning disabilities and their families within services and society.

Over 3,000 people with learning disabilities and/or autism in England are in similar units at a cost of over half a billion pounds per year. People are likely to live in these units for years, to be placed a long way from home, to be treated with major tranquilising drugs and to experience self-harm, physical assaults, restraint and seclusion. Currently, more people are being transferred into such units than are transferring out.

On the day of a House of Lords debate into the premature deaths of people with learning disabilities, we would like to highlight that support for people with learning disabilities and/or autism and their families should have four basic principles:

1)   We should support people to live long, healthy, fulfilling and meaningful lives

2)   A learning disability and/or autism is not a health problem.  Any additional health problems should be taken seriously and we should make sure that our health services work just as well for everyone who uses them

3)   We should respect, value and work closely with families and others who care about the person

4)   We should make sure that commissioners and providers are using the best available evidence to make decisions.

For over 20 years we have known how to do this. We know how to provide good support for families with young children. We know how to support people’s health needs. We know how to support people, including people who are distressed, to live active, meaningful lives within their local communities without the need for specialist drugs or major tranquilisers. And we know that all of these things depend on people with learning disabilities and/or autism and their families being respected as equal citizens.

Hannah Joanne Adams
Sarah Adams
Jahanara Ahmed
Emma Alcock
Robert Allen
Diane Allen
Jonathan Anderson
Catherine Andrew
Natasha Andrews
Joanna Apps
Colin Archer
Denise Armer
Louise Arnold
Bev Ashman
Gina Aylward
Shirley Ayres
Robin Bailey
Diane Bailey
Yvonne Bailey
Susannah Baines Dr
Claire Baines
Hilary Baker
Peter Baker Dr
Susan Barnes
Natalie Barnes
Sonya Barnett
Adam Barnett
Oliver Barnicoat
Louise Barry
Trish Barton
Rachel Batchelor
Katie Batchelor
Amanda Bates
Julie Beadle-Brown Dr
Kieron Beard Dr
Liz Beddoe
Sheena Bell Dr
Davey Bennett
Jane Bernal Dr
Paul Bernal
Wendy Berry
Stephen Beyer Dr
Tom Bichard
Kate Bielby
Katie Bigham Dr
Kirsty Bishop
Ali Bishop
Victoria Bithell
Kathy Black
Noelle Blackman
Emily Blake Dr
L S Blue
Rachel Blundell
Dawn Boden
Jane Bolanf
Philip Booth
Denise Boulton
Sarah Bowell
Lyndsay Bradley
Jill Bradshaw Dr
Liz Breeze
Chloe Brooks Dr
Sarah Brown
Hilary Brown Prof
Lesley Brownlie
Melanie Bruce Dr
L Buchanan
Julia Buckingham
Maddy Bunker
Athene Burdge
Suzie Burgess
John Burns
Amanda Burns
Trish Burns
Rosemary G Burslem
Lois Cameron
Reed Cappleman
Steven Carnaby Dr
Sarah Carrier
Jane Carter
Jenny Carter
Katie Cebula Dr
Darren Chadwick Dr
Jill Chaplin Dr
Chapman Chapman
Rohhss Chapman Dr
Stephanie Chapman
Tony Charman Prof
Sue Charman
Deborah Chinn Dr
Anne Chivers
Jessica Chodosh
Pak Chui
Isabel Clare Dr
Jackie Clarke
Christine Clemens
Isabelle Clement
Heidi Clover
Janet Cobb
Alex Cobham
Jonathan Cody-Mayall
David Congdon
Alex Cookson Dr
Vivien Cooper OBE
Ashley Coppard
Carmel Corrigan
Angela Coulter
Martin Coyle
Vicki Crabb
Rosie Cratherne
John Craythorne
Jackie Craythorne
Jane Crittenden
Lisa Crowley
Mairi Ann Cullen
Paul Cundy Dr
Richard Curren
Dave Dagnan Prof
Cathy Darvell
Barrey Davey
Kate Davis Dr
Meraud Davis
Barbara Dewar
Kim Dickinson
Michele Ditchburn
Michael Ditchburn
AM Doherty
Louise Donaldson
Eileen Downey
Richard Drew
Hannah Driver
Michelle Dudderidge
Aisling Duffy
Katie Durkin
Cath Dyer
Korinna Eaton Dr
Patience Elliott
Nell Ellison Dr
Elizabeth Ellison
Eric Emerson Prof
Duncan Enright
Darren Etherington
Michele Exell
Chris Fawcett
David Felce Prof
Stephanie Fenwick
Ann Fergusson
Debra Ferreday Dr
Hilary Fertig
Davina Figgett
Christine Fincham
Janet Finlayson Dr
Stephen Finlayson
Fiona E Fisher
Alan Fisher
Marianne Fisher
Jonathan Fisher
Jo Fitzgerald
Michelle Fleur-Coffait Dr
Karen Folder
Jen Fookes
Yvonne Foord
Sheridan Forster
John Franey Dr
Pat Frankish Dr
Karin Fuchs Dr
Michael Fullerton
John Furlong
Alisha Gainforth
Lizzie Gale
Rhianon Gale
Rachel Galvin
Philip Garner Prof
Jill Gascoigne
Myrto Gelati
Alison Giraud-Saunders
Nicola Gitsham
Juliet Goldbart Prof
Anne Goodrich
Nick Gore Dr
Karen Graham
Gemma Grant
Alison Green
Gemma Griffith Dr
Richard Grove
Ana-Maria Guzman
Ana-Maria Guzman
Christine Hainsworth Dr
Ian Hall
Chris Hamnett
Emily Handley Dr
Francesca Hankins
Gail Hanrahan
Becky Hardiman
Dougal Hare Dr
John Harmond
Oona Harte
Rose Harwood
Richard Hastings Prof
Elaine Hatfield
Chris Hatton Prof
Charlotte Hazeldine
Corrina Hearmon
Charles Henley
Lesley Herriot
Pauline Heslop
Sarah Hesselden
Laura Higgins
Derek Hill
Jenny Hillman
Jan Hodgson
Simon Holland-Roberts
Liz Holwell
Carole Hoole
Lisa Hopkins
Val Houghton
Sarah Hounsome
Joyce Howarth
Marie Howley
Richard Huggins
J. Carl Hughes Dr
Lee Humber Dr
Siobhan Hunt
Elizabeth Hunter
Danielle Hurley-Vervoort
Rachel Hussey Dr
Katherine Ince
Andrew Jahoda Prof
Neil James Dr
Chris Jenkins
Robert Jenkins Dr
Ffion John Dr
Paul Johnston
Khowla Jomar
Victoria Jones
Caroline L. Jones Dr
Edwin Jones Dr
Robert S P Jones Prof
Troy Jones
Sarah Jones
Steve Jones
George Julian Dr
B Kambasha
Graeme Karger
Tim Keilty
Hannah Kelland Dr
Susan Kellett
Áine Kelly
Susan Kelly
Sarah Kennedy
Maeve Kenny
Susan Kernachan
Joshua Kernohan
Wendy Kerrigan
Bruce Kidd
Julia Kielty
Jamie Kirkland Dr
Deborah Kitson
Rani Klose
Jayne Knight
Fiona Knott Dr
Katrina Kurowski
Christy Laganis
Pete Langdon Dr
Margaret Larkin
Peter Larkin Dr
Bella Latham
Andrew Leach
Rosie Lee
Beck Lee-Allen
Lucy Lee-Allen
Cathy Lennon
Ben Lewis
Kathy Liddell
Kirsty Liddiard
Natalie Lindau
Geoff Lindsay Prof
Chris Lisney
Julie Lloyd
Fiona Lobban
Louise Locock
Rachael Lofthouse
Marian Long
Pam Luckock
Henrik Lynggaard
Anne MacDonald
Robina Mallett
Aida Malovic
Kirstie Mann
Anna Marriott
Helen Marron
Daniel Marsden
Adelle Marshal
Briony Martin
Jessy Martinez
Xanthe May
Bernie Mayall
Clare McCarthy
Michelle McCarthy Dr
Brian McClean Dr
Jane McConnell
Damien McCullagh Dr
Sharon McDaid
Jane McDowell
Kelly McEvoy
Jill McGarry Dr
Peter McGill Prof
Erica McInnis Dr
Janice McLaughlin
Kate McLeod
Katie McMillan
Joss Mearns
Anji Mehta
David Miland
Ruth Millar
Lorraine Millard
Richard Mills
Edana Minghella
Duncan Mitchell Prof
Mira Mohideen
V Molloy
V P Molloy
Veronica Monks
Chriss Moore
Gareth Morewood
Phil Morgan
Hannah Morgan
Jo Moriarty
Neil Morris
Jenny Morris
Kathleen Morris Dr
Perry Morrison Dr
Katharine Moss
Angharad Mountford
Fiona Moy
Iso Mullarkey
Glynis Murphy Prof
Hana Musoh
My Life My Choice
Anne Necus
Max Neill
Melvyn Newell
Katharine Newman
Ruth Norway
Audrey O’Keefe
Patrick O’Keefe
Peter O’Keefe
Steven Oathamshaw Dr
Marie O’Boyle-Duggan
Rosaleen O’Brien
John O’Brien
David O’Driscoll
Debra Oliveri
Johanna Olli
Dave Ormerod
Delia O’Rourke
Rachel Osborne
Tony Osgood
Becky Packham
Ben Paechter
Jo Palmer
Anne Paris
Lainey Parkin
Ian Paylor Dr
Katie Peacock
Lauren Pearce-Whiteing
Bernard Pearson
Anne Pemberton
Ian Penfold
Bridget Penhale
Gateshead People
Prithvi Perepa Dr
Cristina Perez
Freda Emily Perkins
Terry Pescod
Alison Petch
Katherine Phipps
Dominic Picillo
Liz Piercy
Linda Piggott
Stefania Pilla
Sam Pinkney
Kiran Pitt
Rachel Pollard Dr
Karen Pooh
Laurie Poole
Barbara Poole
Andrew Pounce
Laurie Powis Dr
Jennifer Preston
Sharon Price
Sarah Pryce
Emma Pullar
Michelle Pyer
Jo Pyrah
Tara Quinn-Cirillo Dr
Maria Qureshi
Ulla Raisanen
Vicki Raphael
Donn Reid
Jackie Reid
Bernadette Reigar
Alyson Reive Dr
Michael Rendall
Amanda Reynolds
Jenny Rhodes
Michael Richards
Lisa Richardson
Sarah Richardson
Renata L Riha
Sarah Riley
Zelah Riley
Chris Roberts
Pam Robertson
Malcolm Robertson
Janet Robertson
Ela Robertson
Andy Robinson
Eamonn Rodohan Dr
Steven Rose
Katherine Runswick-Cole Dr
Sara Ryan Dr
Travis Ryan
Claire Ryan
Nora Ryan
Susan Sadek
Sarah Samuels Dr
Kate Sanger
Precious Sango
Julie Schwartz
Katrina Scior Dr
Sophie Scott-Harman
Jan Seamer
Beverly Seeley
Marianne Selby-Boothroyd
Magda Sereda
Lucy Series
Paul Sharpe Dr
Kate Shaw
Kay Sheldon
John Shephard
Estelle Shields
Maya Simmons
Heather Simmons
Alison Simon Dr
Lee Simpson
Vicky Singleton Dr
Joanne Skellern
Diane Skudder
Lucy Skye
Maxine Slapper
Jenny Sloneem Dr
Dominic Slowie
Mandy Smedly
Russell Smedly
Eileen Smith
David Smith Prof
Claire Smith
Dianne Soulsby
PSG Speakup
Lesley Spiers
Suzette Starmer
Toby Staveley
Julie Steel Dr
Mike Steel
Frances Steepe
Biza Stenfert Kroese Dr
Jackie Stephens
Chris Sterry
Hannah Stewart
Helen M Stone
Irene Storey
Michael Stow
Jane Street
Jan Sunman
Emma Sweeney
Ertan Taner
Beth Tarleton
Alex Tate
John L Taylor Prof
Nick Taylor Dr
Alison Telfer
Alan Tennyson
Liz Thackray
kate Theodore Dr
Pauline Thomas
Paul M Thomas
Barbara Thompson
Jeanette Thompson
Amanda Thornton Dr
Sue Thurman
Ann-Charlott Timander
Stuart Todd Dr
Debbie Tomkies
Sandy Toogood
Fran Topple
Vaso Totsika Dr
Christine Towers
Sarah Townsend
Janet Toye
Lois Tozer
Pareskevi Triantafyllopoulo
Lisa Trigg
Michelle Trollope Dr
Chrissie Trow
Elizabeth Trrescher
Sue Turner
Agnes Turnpenny Dr
Richard Tutton Dr
Sally Twist Dr
Caitriona Twomey
Mandy Twyman
Claire Tyrrell
Margaret Tyson
Rachael Vann
Leah Vanono
Jo Varela Dr
Athanasios Vostanis
Jenny Wade
Proscovia Wagaba
Emily Wailes
David Walker
Denise Walker
Daniel Walker
Sarah Walker
Sam Walker
Maria Walker
Claire Walker
Lorna Walker Bryan
Elin Walker-Jones Dr
Brian Wallace
Barbara Wallace
Bryony Wallis Dr
Jan Walmsley Prof
Jools Walters
Imelda Walton
Mandy Ware
Nicholas Watson Prof
Debby Watson
Collette Watson
Georgina Watts
Simon Whitaker Dr
Sabrina Wiffen
Marie Willan
Val Williams
Sara Wilmott
Wendy Wilson
Jean Wilson
Philippa Wilson
Angie Wilson
Dawn Wiltshire
Karen Windle
Ian Winstanley
Rebecca Wood
Alicia Wood
Neil Woodhead
Georgia Wright
Brian Wynne Prof
Sue Yabsley
Paula Youell Dr
Jane Youell
Rhea Young


3 thoughts on “Letter to the Guardian

  1. Pingback: Day 3: Letter for Connor #107days | #107days

  2. I’m glad to be able to add my name in support of this campaign.
    The evidence base is there and for children and young adults in the future every new education and healthcare plan and subsequent provision should recognise it.

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