‘Worst of all, one day a particularly awful carer thought it would be very funny to heat up dog food and get Richard to eat it. Richard eat it as he was scared. All the care staff had a good laugh at his expense’
Richard was one of four children born with learning disabilities to a mother and father that were abusive toward them. Richard and his siblings were taken into care at a young age and split apart. He had a very difficult time being separated form his brothers and sisters. Richard was the eldest and he had felt responsible, he had tried to protect them. He missed them everyday and asked to see them all the time but it was never allowed.
When Richard grew up he thought he would have a new start and a new life. He left the children’s home and went to live in a supported living, where there were supposed to be caring staff to support him become independent and open a new chapter in his story. But nothing got better for Richard, the staff at the supported living that were supposed to care for him abused him. They took his bank card and stole his money and spent large amounts on expensive things for themselves, phones and computer games. Whilst Richard had nothing.
They didn’t buy healthy food for him and help him to cook. They used Richards money to buy takeaways for him and the staff to eat, which is what they preferred. Richard didn’t get taken out by his carers so he put on a lot of weight. He was becoming very unhealthy. The carers just sat around the flat he was paying for, playing on their phones and watching what they wanted to, on his television.
They didn’t support him to contact his siblings or do anything that he wanted to do in his life. He was under total control. This was no life at all.
Worst of all, one day a particularly awful carer thought it would be very funny to heat up dog food and get Richard to eat it. Richard eat it as he was scared. All the staff had a good laugh at his expense.
Richard got an advocate from Advocacy Matters. His advocate, Sally, had known him when he was at school and when he had lived in the children’s home. She could not believe her eyes when she saw him again for the first time. He was in terrible shape. Richard told his Sally about all the terrible things that had been happening to him since she last saw him.
No one had believed what Richard was saying apart form his advocate. Sally knew that Richard was not lying. She reported this abuse to the local authority and made safeguarding alerts. Sally made sure that the police were aware and that there was an investigation into what happened.
Richard didn’t get all the justice he would have liked. No one went to prison, and the people who employed his carers carried on working with other people. However he did get compensation for the money he had lost. Best of all Richard moved to a new placement where they actually care about him and respect him.
Now Richard is reborn, he is slim and active. He has a girlfriend and a social life. He has even been supported to make contact with his family his most precious wish.
Independent Advocacy set Richard free from a life of torment and abuse.
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