Katie's Diary

Failed by the System

7th May 2013

ubu CEO Dorothy Jarvis Lee has backed the campaign demanding greater protection for autism victims.

In recent months she has become increasingly concerned that many of the people who rely on the care that ubu provides are being let down by those they should be able to turn to.

Her concerns were this week reinforced by the revelation that a 21 year old man with Asperger’s Syndrome was strangled after he went to the police and told them he had previously been attacked. Adrian Palmer’s case was not fully investigated or the perpetrators prosecuted because the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said he was not a credible witness.

Four months later he was found dead in the street in Tenbury Wells, Worcestershire. The man who killed him was jailed but later released on parole.

After his death the Independent Police Complaints Commission found that West Mercia Police had let him down and criticised the lack of care for Adrian.

But Dorothy said Adrian’s case was not unusual and that it was common for the police and other protective services to ignore complaints made by people who had learning difficulties.

“The people we support have the same needs as every other person in society and that includes being believed and protected by the emergency services,” she said.

“In some cases they need that protection more than the rest of us.  However, increasingly they are being let down at a time when they specifically need that support.”

“It shouldn’t be the IPCC who investigate when things go wrong; instead each regional emergency service should ensure it has robust policies and procedures in place to care for those most at risk.”

Failed by the System

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