Four days ago (27th October) Jeremy, Beth’s Dad, reported that she was back in seclusion – not the cell, in a two-room arrangement, but (crucially) with no hatch. So, no way of talking to anyone other than shouting through a door. So no way of hearing phone calls.
It seems that passing her food involved some sort of distraction procedure you might expect to see in a zoo.
It transpired that despite making arrangements to move her from the cell, her care plan had not been updated:
And despite agreements by all that, communicating changes to Beth, should be very carefully managed… It wasn’t. So, all in all, it appears that the change happened without the planning and communication required to make it a success.
Three days after Beth’s meltdown, and after three days of communicating through a door, Beth was back in the cell. It seems her family were informed by Beth…
So I guess she had no window, no dog, no guinea pigs but at least she had the hatch. And she walked there calmly and voluntarily. Her dad explains more:
“So Beth is back in the Seclusion Cell. Locked away again. She has spent the last couple of days locked up in extra care unable to communicate with us on the phone. Have you ever tried talking to someone on a mobile phone on the other side of a 4” solid door?
Contact took place this weekend with shouted sentences back and forth, blocked by the locked door.
Beth has been distressed hearing that she hurt 2 people. When she meltdowns like she did it is an unconscious act. She is unable to control herself not remember afterwards what she did. This always greatly distresses her.
St Andrew’s reaction was to ask to ask Beth if she, therefore, would feel safer and also be happier back in the seclusion cell where she could once again talk to her mum and dad. Of course, Beth said she would prefer that. So once more they locked her away.
If they had instead offered her a rabbit to cuddle, help to manage her emotions, the 3 trained staff to help her and a way of phoning home, I know as well as everyone else what she would have chosen.
It sickens me that such manipulative behaviour has been engineered and carried out by those responsible for her care.
In the few days she spent safely in extra care with proper help, activities and contact with animals she loves I saw a daughter I hadn’t seen for many, many months.
Put yourself in Beth’s place, how can this be right?”
Jeremy has described more about this on a chat show that can be accessed here:
Jeremy has written a moving open letter to Beth’s carers that can be accessed here.
So, for now, Beth is back in her small windowless room, with 2 pieces of plastic covered foam (one bed shaped and one chair shaped) and the hatch. She is 17. She has been there for nearly 2 years. Because she is anxious. Our NHS is paying £13k per week for this ‘care’.
You can help.
Beth likes jokes and would love to receive cards. Keep them cheerful! Send them to Jeremy, Beth’s Dad, 31 Oaklands Avenue, Harborne. Birmingham, B17 9TU.
This blog was written with prior agreement with Jeremy.