Call the rozzers!

Thump.

Yes, it’s happened again.  That’s my head banging on my desk again.  Hot on the heels of last week’s case – is yet another ‘orrible case where a local authority has bunged somebody in a care home in the face of their objections and those of their family, no proper assessments of capacity or best interests, no proper consideration of less restrictive options, no authorisation under the deprivation of liberty safeguards and no application to the Court of Protection, etc etc etc.  This time it’s Cambridgeshire, and it’s not a court case but a Local Government Ombudsman report.

The LGO found ‘numerous failures to comply with the Act and Code. In particular, there was no formal assessment of need or capacity and no formal best interests meeting’, and the LGO also highlighted poor record keeping as a concern.  The LGO point out that failure to even consult with the DoLS team was a ‘serious failing’ on the council’s part. The council blamed the care home for not making a DoLS application, but the LGO pointed out (take out your pencils, lawyers!) that ‘under s25(7) of the Local Government Act 1974, any action taken by the home is considered to be taken on behalf of the Council and in the exercise of its functions.’

The LGO asked Cambridgeshire what consideration it had given to applying to the Court of Protection.  Cambridgeshire said it hadn’t because Mrs N had agreed to the placement (even though their own records state that she and her husband objected) and because they had made an IMCA referral (there’s no discussion of what the IMCA said or did in this case).  The LGO cited the case of Neary and ticked off Cambridgeshire for not ‘signposting’ the family to the Court of Protection to challenge the decision.  Now, it’s good to see the LGO citing Neary, but I think the LGO’s reading of Neary is wrong.  To expect the family to apply to court misses the point that the MCA does not give the local authority authority to do things like this without first seeking clear authority from the court.  Sitting around and waiting for family to apply to the Court of Protection is in fact precisely what happened in Neary.   We might also make an analogy to the case of Glass v UK, where the mother of a young boy objected to doctors treating him with morphine and the dispute became very heated.  In that case, the European Court of Human Rights held that the hospital should have applied to court to resolve the dispute.  They commented that although the family themselves could have made the application, ‘in the circumstances it considers that the onus was on the Trust to take the initiative and to defuse the situation in anticipation of a further emergency’ (para 79).  In other words, public authorities have the skills, resources and expertise to make applications, and families not only do not have those things but are also in a state of emotional distress.  To expect them to make an application is unfair.  I wish the LGO had made that point; signposting simply is not enough.

The LGO found fault causing injustice.  In addition to failings in relation to the MCA and the DOLS, there were also failings in relation to the Choice of Accommodation Directions as they failed to properly consider Mrs N’s preferred accommodation which would have been closer and misinformed her that they couldn’t pay a top up fee for respite.  The LGO recommended that the authority apologise to Mrs N (although, oddly, Mr N is not mentioned – although it was him who was detained), organise refresher training for their staff and pay Mrs N £750 in compensation for her distress.  I would say, that when one considers how the Court of Protection might have looked at this, Cambridgeshire got off lightly.  I’m also a bit unclear about the future for Mr N – is he to stay in the care home?  Is a return home now being explored?

There’s plenty of legal meat on them bones, but I’ll leave it to others to pick that off.  What I am interested in here is some emerging themes in these types of cases, cases stretching back to JE v DE, through G v ENeary and all the recent spate of ghastly cases I’ve discussed on this blog.  To be very clear, what follows is not meant to be a description of ordinary social work practice – I have met many excellent social work professionals (including from Cambridgeshire and Essex).  But these are some common characteristics that emerge in the kinds of cases I’ve been moaning about here over the last few years.

Over-estimating local authorities’ authority

A first, dominant, theme, is local authorities believing they have far more legal authority to act than they do.  Check out this paragraph from the LGO report:

The Council says that when someone says their preference is to remain at home, arrangements for a placement in residential care would still go ahead if the social worker thought it appropriate. The Council would be acting unlawfully if it did this for someone who had capacity. If the person in question lacked capacity to decide where to live, the decision to move them can only lawfully be taken if a proper mental capacity assessment and best interest decision have been carried out, in accordance with the Act.

In fairness to the Council, and as I’ve grumbled about here before, the existing and new community care guidance does not make clear that they simply cannot do this.  However, it is clear that not only can you not do this to a person assessed as having capacity (as the LGO points out), you also cannot do this do a person without mental capacity – as the judgments in A Local Authority v A and Neary make clear (which the LGO fails to point out).  In the background to these cases appears to be a belief that wrenching somebody from their home in the face of their objections is a matter of social work judgment and discretion, not a serious interference with human rights that requires formal legal authority.  As I’ve written about countless times before, this is a belief that is not contradicted in the Codes of Practice, or the Department of Health’s policy guidance on community care and safeguarding.

Discrediting family members

Another common theme in these cases seems to be belittling and trivialising the concerns of family, and discrediting them.  Mark Neary has written on his blog about how his concerns about Steven’s care were dismissed as trivial.  Complaints that Steven had been sent home in the wrong trousers, which did not fit him, prompted the local authority to write in an email ‘there’s always something or other with Mr Neary’ (how they must have squirmed when that was quoted in the judgment…).  Yet, meanwhile, the European Court of Human Rights held in Stanev that not ensuring that people had their own clothes to wear ‘was likely to arouse a feeling of inferiority in the residents’ (para 209) and contributed to their finding of inhuman and degrading treatment – one of the most serious human rights offences under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).  Now, I don’t think it’s the wearing of someone else’s clothes that is the issue (I say this as a perennial ‘borrower’ of my husband’s jumpers).  Nor is it even the occasional mistake in sorting out laundry and helping somebody in getting dressed (mistakes happen, although systematic uncorrected mistakes are a different issue).  It is the existence of a culture that holds that to want be dressed in one’s own clothes, in clothes that fit – something that is important to most people in their everyday lives and a core part of our identities – is a ‘trivial’ concern.  This culture of trivialisation of matters that most people take for granted is what is capable of arousing a feeling of inferiority.

This pattern of trivialisation emerged in this case too.  Mrs N – Mr N’s wife – was especially concerned that the care home that Mr N had been placed in was far away and required her to take two buses and took over an hour each way.  She asked again and again for a closer care home placement, as did her family, but the council recorded the concerns of these ‘angry women’ (as their records described them) as ‘trivial’.  This ‘trivialising’ of concerns appears to be a way of professionals distancing their responsibility for seriously distressing interferences in people’s lives, and failure to recognise that things like home and routine and contact – the very essence of Article 8 if you like – are important.  Painting understandably upset and frustrated relatives as ‘angry women’ is frankly the oldest (and most sexist) trick in the big handbook of discreditation tactics, closely followed by ‘overbearing parent’.

Other discreditation tactics include painting family members as deceitful and perhaps even villainous.  A large number of these cases – G v E, the Milton Keynes Council case and the Somerset case stand out – have ‘safeguarding’ allegations in the background.  These are not always properly investigated; once a person has been saddled with the label of ‘abuser’ that seems to drive the process.  Further events are interpreted in that light, there is a serious risk of confirmation bias.

In Neary and in this case, the family were said to have under-reported the level of ‘incidents’ at home.  In Neary, this suggestion was rejected by Jackson J, who suggested instead that the high level of incidents in the care home was because of Steven’s distress.  Yet even if families do under-report incidents, it is hardly surprising if they are trying to resist authoritarian and officious (not to mention unlawful) interferences with their fundamental human rights…  A little sympathy for their position would go a long way.  Yet, in order to justify these interferences, their views – which are at threat to the authority’s plans – must be discredited, and so they must be too.

Deceiving family

Most famously in Neary, but also in this case, local authorities may deceive people regarding plans to move them back home or (in this case) closer to home.  Interestingly, in both cases the move to a care home began as respite – a ‘temporary’ state of affairs – and then became a refusal to allow a person back home.  This circumvents issues around conveying a person – as they and their families may comply in the belief that it is temporary.

Presumably these deceptions are an attempt to neutralise their complaints.  Or perhaps they are white lies, which social workers believe are working towards the greater good.  I suspect (I hope) it is probably not as devious as a deliberate attempt to prevent them from formally challenging decisions.  And yet, whatever the intentions, the effect is that the local authority retains considerable power without challenge, because what has to be challenged is either not known or is unclear.  At times this feels like a form of gaslighting abuse, where families may start to question their own reality.  When Mrs N in this case told the local authority that she had found a care home, been to see the bed with her own eyes, they told her that there couldn’t be a bed because the social worker had rung up all the homes in that area and there weren’t any.  They did not ask for the name of the care home and contact them to check it out – they questioned the veracity of her claims and her ability to do independent research into ways to meet her husband’s needs.

Treating people as the ‘family dog’

This is a huge bugbear of mine, and I have to say it is not just local authorities that do this, but – to some extent – the LGO themselves and the courts.  The focus is so often on what happened to families, and how families felt about their relatives’ arrangements.  And that is very, very, important – both as individuals in their own rights, but also because the person’s welfare is intimately linked to their own.  But, at the end of the day, it is the person themselves who has been detained, who has been removed from home.  The LGO’s focus in this case was on Mrs N’s objections, Mrs N’s anxiety – and clearly that is right, but ultimately, even if Mrs N had been happy for her husband to move into the care home, he himself was objecting.  The injustice was against them both.

I worry that sometimes the take home message from Neary has been that families get to decide where people live.  And that isn’t the take home message at all.  The take home message is that if local authorities (or health authorities) try to impose living arrangements on a person and either their families or they object, then they need formal legal authority.  It is not the case that if family are happy and the person is not, there’s nothing to worry about.  They are not the family dog, they are not a possession.  Deprivation of liberty and Article 8 are not about the severance of familial authority, they are about the person’s own rights to self-determination, and to enjoyment of home, family and private life.

Shoddy or non-existent investigations

Shoddy or non-existent safeguarding investigations form the backdrop to cases like G v E, the Somerset case and the Milton Keynes case. Another common theme is failure to properly investigate the alternatives.  In Neary the best interests assessor point blank refused to consider the alternative of a return home.  In last week’s Essex case the alternative of a return home was not properly investigated.  And in this case, I’ve no idea if a return home was properly investigated because the report doesn’t say, but what the LGO does make clear is that the social workers did not make sufficient efforts to find a closer care home, to facilitate more regular contact.  It does not report what support options they looked at for a return home.

Calling the Rozzers…

One of the things that stood out to me in this report – and instantly reminded me of JE v DE – are threats to families that if they try to remove their loved ones from the care home, the care home will call the police.  This has a number of effects.  Firstly, families may believe that the care home has authority which they simply do not have to prevent removal from the home.  Secondly, it paints the family as potential criminals of some kind – warranting police involvement for the offence of wanting to go on an outing with their loved one or bring them back home.  It reinforces the discreditation of families I discussed earlier.  Thirdly, it is a frightening suggestion, and may well deter other efforts to try to challenge the authority of the council and the care home.

However, these cases set me wondering: what would the police do in these circumstances?  Do they have a policy or guidance on returning people to care homes if the care home asks for it?  What about preventing family from taking their relatives out of care homes or hospitals – either temporarily or permanently?  What is their understanding of the powers of a deprivation of liberty authorisation in relation to taking and conveying and returning a person home (a hotly disputed topic!)?  Just over a year ago the Daily Mail reported (yes yes, I know) that the police were called when the family of Minetta Webb took her home from hospital, and the police described this as abduction.  Apparently, on the back of the DoLS authorisation (which the family claimed not to have known about – so goodness knows what happened there…) the police threatened to boot down their front door and take Minetta Webb back to hospital.  Do the DoLS really grant the police that kind of authority?!

What I find striking here is the positioning of the family as ‘abductors’ when they are taking somebody home, or even just on an outing.  Because another reading of cases like this, cases like G v E, is that the local authority are themselves complicit in abduction.  Has anyone thought of calling the police in these circumstances, to complain about kidnap and false imprisonment by a local authority? I wonder what would they would do?!

Anyway, if anyone (@mentalhealthcop I’m looking at you) does know of any police guidance or policy on the MCA and the DOLS, particularly around taking and conveying and returning people to care homes or hospitals, or indeed returning them home from care homes or hospital without legal authority to detain them, I would love to see it.

[Update: on that last question, see the comment from Mental Health Cop (aka Inspector Michael Brown) below.  Also, Mark Neary says he did call the police, and they said they couldn’t intervene:

 

The police are apparently working on new MCA guidance now, and I’ll post it here as soon as it’s published.]

Advertisements

16 thoughts on “Call the rozzers!

  1. I think your “family dog” point is really important. Section 26(1) of Local Government Act 1974 makes clear that a complaint can be made to the LGO on behalf of another person. I note from the LGO report that “Mrs N complain[ed] that the Council moved her husband into a residential home against both *his* and her wishes”. One wonders a) whether in fact Mrs N was complaining on her husband’s behalf (as well as hers), or b), to the extent that she didn’t explicitly say that, whether the LGO should have recognised it as being made on his behalf (as well as hers).

    It is not clear from the report whether Mr N is able to communicate effectively, but, if he can, did the LGO at any point consider talking to him?

    • I don’t know whether they spoke to him (I hope so), but I agree that it is important to consider whether the investigation should include complaints about a person who might not be able to complain on their own behalf (and not simply the concerns of the complainant).

  2. Good blog, very thought provoking. I’ve written MCA Guidance for the police which is circulated as draft to all forces. (We’re after feedback on the style, detail and content of the document because if it’s helpful and sufficiently detailed without being verbose, we’ll do other topics on MH law.

    It doesn’t touch on DoLs, though, as I envisage a separate document on that and it’s further down the queue because of so few DoLs related queries being flagged up by officers as problematic following incidents. But in responding to suggestion of false imprisonment, most police officers should know that the burden is on the detainer to show their actions are lawful if the fact of imprisonment / detention is confirmed. There is little doubt that officers turning up at the care home would find detention confirmed very easily. So it’s then a case of asking staff to outline the legal basis of their actions to determine what, if anything needs to happen next.

    Many years ago, I was the duty inspector called to an inpatient psychiatric ward where a similar situation played out. A patient had caused thousands of pounds worth of damage in three separate incidents, where she was trying to forcibly escape from the ward. Nursing staff had tried to handle it initially, police were called to “give her a warning” on the second occasion and I went down the third time to see why they kept ringing. Upon arrival, damage confirmed, staff witnessed it, etc.. I suspected the patient was trying to get out because we’d had a report of her being AWOL only a few days before and another team had returned her.

    In fact, she was an informal patient, not detained MHA. Staff had not applied MHA holding powers and couldn’t explain any other legal justification for holding her against her will except to say “The Consultant said she can’t leave!” False imprisonment established and lawful excuse for causing criminal damage. Various internal meetings followed but the patient declined to make any complaint – I think she was just grateful to get out. I’d hope something similar would happen in the care home situations you describe here. I might BLOG about this to raise awareness of the particular problem.

    Hope this helps.

    • This really helps, thank you very much! What a great story, I shall be telling that when doing training.

      I suppose my underlying concern is that if local authorities are confused about the limits of their power under what is known as the ‘general defence’ of the MCA (sections 5-6, and what usually forms the basis for actions unless they’ve gone to court), then I worry that other professional agencies might as well. So my worry is that police turn up and the care home says ‘they’re here because they lack capacity and it’s in their best interests’, and that’s viewed as enough (in a context in which the person or their family are objecting). But hopefully that wouldn’t happen and they’d want something more formal than that.

      Looking forward to reading the police MCA guidance, and I don’t envy whoever has to write the guidance on DoLS!

    • Your passion and integrity on these issues always stands out and thanks for this and other related posts. There is good and bad practice out there from Police, Social Workers, and others ( even lawyers?). My experience is that the good practice, whilst hugely positive, will never hit the headlines or, by definition, the LGO or the courts. This can lead to a perspective that over emphasises the negative aspects of this area of law. However the negative issues should righty be shouted loudly from the roof tops.
      I am glad to hear that your story was many years ago and hope things are improving. I find the scenario shocking and I am sure that any of my professional peers would also- perhaps this indicates that it is the exception as opposed to the norm- I hope so.
      I’ll also share a couple of brief stories about Police involved with Mental Health Act:
      I was in a custody suite very recently assessing a person under the MHA- the clock was due to run out in custody- am Inspector (yes) suggested that they lengthen the time in custody using a s135(1)- after I had choked on my custard cream we agreed it wasn’t a good idea!
      Another quick one- a person who was v unwell and I had made an application for section 2 – as I was arranging to convey the gentleman a Detective was adamant that I couldn’t take the gentleman to hospital as he needed to take him to another location to a video ID suite. I didn’t let him take the acutely unwell person but it took a lot of persuasion. Maybe I should have called the Police to arrest the officer for obstructing a MHAA- what do you think the police would have done? My positive experiences of working with the police are far to many and great to mention and are by far the most common experience for me. Feel free to use these stories in any training Lucy but with the caveat that they are uncommon and not the norm.

      • Hi Simon, thanks for those. I agree – and take on board – your point that the good practice stories are rarely told. In fact, it’s actually quite hard for them to get into the open. As you probably know, the regulations governing research involving people who may lack the mental capacity to consent to participate are extremely stringent. As a result, almost all the MCA/DOLS research speaks to professionals and families and not the individuals concerned. Moreover, what research there is tends not to give individuals stories but make generalisations, like professionals think the DoLS work well or families were happy etc etc. I’ve come across some absolutely brilliant, creative, wonderful stories from the DoLS, but I can’t use them because of confidentiality issues. However, you saying this has made me think… there are good news stories in the latest CQC reports, and there are cases like Manuela Sykes and Re MM where the authorities acted correctly in putting difficult decisions before the court, who then made orders authorising people’s return home. So I may start putting together a post about the characteristics of ‘good news’ cases. Thanks for the idea, and any suggestions welcome!

  3. These days some social workers really seem to be looking for a quiet process driven job with all the decisions being taken elsewhere. I blame prevailing management culture for this.

    As I often explain, taking Mrs Jones to the care home in a minor crisis on Friday evening may be defensible practice. What then happens on Monday morning is what’s important and this is where the problems begin. If she’s still there 52 Mondays later, opportunities may have been lost.

    To **** up on the scale of some of the cases you report generally takes senior management involvement. You don’t need to be very senior in an organisation to have the habits of authority turn you into a dreadful listener and a bit of a bully who marches over everyone and systematically over-estimates the competence of their role.

    Was having a discussion with a social worker only today: I suspect they were trying to unload some decision-making onto a DoLS assessor. Probably nothing more sinister than feeling they didn’t have the time to deal with the issue properly and were looking for a short cut. Someone’s recently recontacted grandson had asked about taking his Nan out and had even talked about caring for her at home. He’d explained this to the social worker and they rang me about how he could be restrained if he tried to take her away. The salvo began with some of the trivialising and low key undermining you outline above. Not even the most perfunctory inquiries about why a family member might wish to host a visit and possible practicalities had been made. The person in question has nursing needs so a trip out might indeed be a complex proposition but my interlocutor was clearly hoping I’d join in the fretting and the in-group bonding and just tell them Mrs X had to stay there so they could tell the family member, nicely, to hop off.

    I gave the standard lecture about a duty to promote article eight rights but have very little confidence in this being followed up on zealously.

    Tut, tut for believing the Daily Mail at all, Lucy Series. I know a spun article with only one perspective being represented when I see one. I don’t doubt there was a serious breakdown in communication between hospital and family and maybe even poor practice by professionals but this is shoddy dog whistle journalism and I’m sure there’s another side to the story. Did anyone seriously think that the removal of a frail 107 year old who was in hospital would not be followed up on? I can imagine the DM headlines if the hospital had shrugged and said ‘Ah well, probably for the best’. The reasons middle market tabloids are critical of public services are not the reasons you are critical of public services. I doubt you and Paul Dacre would get on if you met so won’t hold this against you further

    In answer to your question about the Police. If there is a DoLS authorisation in place, a judge in chambers consulted about a return when a family were threatening to end a placement didn’t seem to think Police involvement at all problematic. Authorising any other staff to act in the role and ensuring they had relevant skills to effect a dignified solution probably would have been.

    http://www.mentalhealthlaw.co.uk/DCC_v_KH_%282009%29_COP_11729380

    Other rationales for Police involvement are potential breaches of the peace. This potentiality is often over-emphasised as people do love to catastrophise, but if you do have a volatile situation in a care home with irate family members banging about the place, you’re not going to call the AA or the Coastguard are you? It’s difficult to talk about some ‘what if’ situations without sounding authoritarian and when tempers are rising, staff will become defensive.

    Most Police forces still have the resources to do welfare checks and look for mis-pers and don’t begrudge this. I know the Mental Health Cop will worry about this sort of thing being the thin end of the wedge but the recourse to the Police in some of these circumstances is a token of the high degree of confidence the service is held in.

    In my experience, the Police are normally very sensible about these things, don’t officiously assert their role or try to rack up the tension (as implied in the Daily Mail travesty you posted a link to) and view themselves as brokers of solutions.

    • Thanks very much for your comments. You’re probably right on Dacre, but that story certainly set me wondering about the limits of police powers (especially on the back of what looked like an urgent authorisation). I’m aware of the DCC v KH case, but it’s hotly disputed whether the judge got the law right on that one!

      • Bluntly, there’d be very little point to DoLS if ever anyone could conclusively prove that it wasn’t lawful to use this authority to return someone to the place where their deprivation of liberty has been authorised. I know lawyers love poking holes in this sort of thing but vulnerable people do actually depend on these arrangements working consistently and decision making being able to happen at a low level in some routine matters. A requirement to go to the Court for every jot and tittle might seem awfully satisfying and might seem to mean that everything is being taken very seriously but would simply mean that Authorities realise that because of widespread non-compliance they’re unlikely to get picked up on anything at all because they’re safe in the crowd, the law falls into contempt and no efforts are made to implement it at all. DoLS , the unloved and lonely stepchild of social policy and human rights law is at an interesting point. One effect of the huge increase in applications that have not yet been attended to is public authorities having daily lessons in exactly what they can get away with. It isn’t perfect and I hope for better, but I’d say before launching any major criticisms of the Safeguards, it’s worth considering who else might be pouring scorn and why. With the Daily Mail, you can be sure it’s not out of an abstract love for the rights of the person.

  4. Pingback: When will local authorities learn? | Socialcaremusings

  5. Hello Lucy
    To be on the other side of the fence is neither easy nor comfortable especially we know that we are very passionate in promoting best practice when it comes to the MCA and DoLS and twice within a week involving two neighbouring authorities in the Eastern region as well !
    Occupational hazards or what ?
    That said, I am all for learning the lessons to improve service delivery and practice.
    p/s thanks for acknowleging that ” I have met many excellent social work professionals (including from Cambridgeshire and Essex ” because in reality, it is the negative that tend to stick in people’s minds !

    • Hi Joseph,
      When I read that it was Cambridgeshire, I was very (very) surprised, until I saw that they had not consulted the DoLS team… I am sure that your colleagues will now, and I am also certain that had they done earlier this would have had a very different ending indeed.

      I’ve been musing lately (as I’ve said in other comments) on the difficulty of telling ‘good news’ stories and good practice stories. This is mostly because they don’t end up in court! But there are some that end up in court (for example, I think Manuela Sykes’ case and Re MM are examples of good practice), and there are a lot in the latest CQC report. If you can think of other published examples I’d love to see them. I’m thinking of putting together another post about themes in these good practice cases, and if there’s anything in particular you think I should mention do let me know!

      Sadly, these good practice cases tend not to identify the public authorities… I do think there’s a place for more research on what use DoLS is being put to (especially conditions), sadly the resesarch published so far doesn’t include many case studies.

  6. Sir Winston Churchill is considered by many as the greatest Briton of all time. As Prime Minister, he lead Great Britain through the Second World War where his refusal to surrender to Nazi Germany inspired the country.

    As the nation reflects on his courage, determination, and leadership of war time Britain, it is also worth knowing that, in December 1942, he wrote about psychiatrists.

    An insightful and inspirational leader, he wrote:

    “I am sure it would be sensible to restrict as much as possible the work of these gentleman, who are capable of doing an immense amount of harm with what may very easily degenerate into charlatanry. The tightest hand should be kept over them, and they should not be allowed to quarter themselves in large numbers upon the Fighting Services at the public expense. There are no doubt easily recognisable cases which may benefit from treatment of this kind, but it is wrong to disturb large numbers of healthy, normal men and women by asking the kind of odd questions in which the psychiatrists specialise. There are quite enough hangers-on and camp followers already.”

    1942 – Sir Winston Churchill

    Sir, we salute you.

  7. Excellent blog, as ever, Lucy.
    In addition to your ‘family dog’ syndrome there is another aspect to these cases that keeps bugging me – why do we always assume that it is the incapacitated person who has to leave their home? Where a couple jointly own a home an incapacitated person has just as much right to remain in their home as their capacitated spouse/partner, but this never happens.

    I have come across several cases where P has been moved into care because their partner is unwilling to tolerate the impact of P’s condition or P’s behaviour or is unwilling to have paid carers come into the home to provide the necessary cares because it would disrupt the routines and patterns of their life; or the partner is unwilling to have the necessary adaptations made to the home to enable P to remain there.

    In such cases where it would be possible for an appropriate care package to keep P at home but the partner is unwilling to accept them why don’t we ever consider that the partner should move out in order to allow P to receive the cares they need (and could receive) to remain out of care? Should the right to maintain your comfortable routines and home environment override your co-owner’s right to remain at home with an appropriate care package?

    I’m not talking about situations where a devoted and loving partner is thoroughly worn out by years of diligent care and can take no more, but situations where P has only a short history of incapacity or where the partner is simply unwilling to compromise on altering their routines or home environment to facilitate appropriate care. In such cases shouldn’t the CoP be involved to adjudicate on whose Art.8 rights take precedence?

  8. Pingback: If I was trying to get to the Court of Protection, I wouldn’t start from here | The Small Places

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s