Sunday, 10 October 2010


C turned 22 recently. C in the same week was taken to Diddlyland by staff.
What image does this project to the public - to C?
That it’s ok to treat adults as kids?
Was there any thought or consideration for C's intrinsic value as an adult, as an individual?

Was there respect for C as a person first and not just as a set of behaviours. C’s Autism/learning disability does not alter his essential worth.

I fought for years for C to have the best education, support, therapies etc so he could achieve social inclusion in the adult world. Not this. Again. Contradicts everything I believe in, fought for, raised awareness for and worked towards with C.

C may very well have enjoyed this as he likes trains. But it doesn’t take much to be creative and find something more appropriate rather than maybe assuming C doesn’t know any better as he doesn’t speak and you can’t measure his IQ. The noises he makes may sound like babble but this does not mean you should babyfy him as he is communicating with himself and his environment and gives value to who C is.

We should be enriching and opening up Cs world, expanding his experience supporting him to grow and not stagnating him in perpetual childhood.

How can C grow in self confidence if low expectations are projected on to him?

To me this is staff demonstrating ‘Theory of mind.’ They are not understanding or relating to C. Imposing what they think from what they have always done.

A photo paints a thousand words. What does it say to you?
Some comments from various walks of my life:

As a parent of a young autistic child I find this frightening for my son’s future.

You must be livid. If anyone did that to my child I would hang draw and quarter them.

You should be grateful for what you get and not rock the boat. The staff are doing their best.

My daughter still likes to play with childish toys. I am weaning her off these to more sensory adult things. There are plenty about these days. But that is behind closed doors. I feel very strongly what we need to say to the public and staff.

In this day and age there is simply NO EXCUSE for reinforcing the public's stereotypical view of autistic people as lesser citizens in this way, and whichever so-called 'carers' were involved in this fiasco are fortunate they weren't exposing MY son to public ridicule like this.

As a refrigerator mum - you shouldnt care!!!

Where is the dignity and respect that our people with LD deserve? They are not adult children...this type of activity is taking us back to the dark days of Institutional care.... and that is part of the problem..... we don't want 'Care'...  we want  acceptance  and meaningful  lives for our people. They need respect and support to enable them not childish activities that only give a picture of pity to anyone observing them in this type of environment. They are PEOPLE FIRST and last.... the staff need more  training...     this is totally unacceptable..... C is an Adult.....  his rights to be treated as such have been negligent.  The staff should be ashamed of themselves!

I thought the CQC changed its regs to include dignity. Are the staff not trained?

Sorry I had to laugh. From Normalization to Personalization and Right to control to Diddlyland!!

Education staff and care staff have a very different mindset. Staff are the only barriers.

Illustrates well the Social Model of disability.

I am a young man with autism and I felt really disgusted when I saw the pictures of C on the Diddly Land train. He is obviously much too old to be on a ride like that as it is intended for young children. I felt very sorry for him as he was most probably being laughed at. He has the same human rights as anybody else and nobody else would be humiliated like this at the age of 22. I hope that me writing this will make sure this doesn't happen to someone else.

This is baby sitting.