Following the publication of the government’s ‘Building the Right Support Action Plan’, Kirsty Matthews, CEO of Learning Disability Charity Hft, said:
We welcome the government’s Action Plan, and hope it will truly and finally effect change to reduce the number of people with a learning disability and/or autism trapped in inpatient units.
Over a decade has passed since the government pledged to remove people from inappropriate inpatient settings, yet there are still more than 2,000 people with a learning disability and/or autism living in in-patient mental health hospitals.
These individuals are often far away from people and places they know, increasing the risk of loneliness and isolation from family, friends and community. It is vital that the new plan is put into place quickly, so everyone with a learning disability and/or autism can live with choice and control.
However, if the Government is truly committed to ‘transforming care’, they must ensure that alongside the plan, there is sufficient investment in housing and support for people with a learning disability and/or autism.
Only when everyone receives the support they need, and lives in a comfortable, accessible place they can call home, will we see a significant drop in the number of people in in-patient units, and the government’s pledge become a reality.
Notes to editors
Hft is a national charity that creatively supports more than 2,200 adults with learning disabilities across England and Wales to live the best life possible. Services range from residential care to supporting people to live independently in their own homes – from a few hours a week to 24 hours a day. Hft also helps people with learning disabilities to take part in daily activities, make friends and develop relationships and to find work.
Established in 1962, Hft is funded in two ways: through local authorities, who fund vital support services, but also through donors, supporters and volunteers who enable us to find new ways to help more people to thrive rather than just get by.
For more information about Hft please visit www.hft.org.uk