By Tracy Hammond
LDE has commented before about the death of Danny Tozer and sadly, we’re not convinced that across the sector, services are any safer, or care standards any better since this tragic event.
Once again, we are writing about how people should be safe and free from abuse in services, when we should be aspiring to so much more for people.
We cannot imagine how painful it must be for those who loved Danny to sit through an inquest into his death. We hope they get the answers they are due.
The independent report into Danny’s death created a poor picture of the care he received from Mencap and certainly highlighted problems within the home.
We hear time and again how family members are treated when they try to raise concerns or get to the bottom of what has happened to their loved ones. This adversarial approach must stop, organisations take a mature approach to working with families, co-production means sharing, organisations that take a confrontational or defensive approach are implicit in creating cultures where poor practice can flourish.
We all need to work together to prevent tragic events and support people to have great lives.
We absolutely believe that people should be held to account when things go wrong, but this is not enough; we need to stop tragedies in the first place. We need to learn from the past, acknowledge how things should have been better and make sector-wide changes, but also cling onto past good practice and build upon, rather than erode this.
We are seeing a rise in the number of larger residential settings and it is difficult to see how these can afford the true person-centred approach that is so important to ensure people good and safe lives. A true person-centred approach is not about using the correct form or planning tool; it is about knowing that person and honouring them during every moment of support.