Hundreds of thousands, and thousands more, have and will lose their liberty, and legal competence for ever in England and Wales on the authorisation of a Local Authority.
By use of a standard Deprivation of Liberty Authorisation..
Nearly a thousand years, after Habeas Corpus ensured citizens could not be imprisoned without due process along came the Mental Capacity Act .
The MCA allows, agents of the state, via a simple, effectively unopposable, as there is no legal aid for family, agent of state Official Solicitor acting for the imprisoned, to remove all freedom and decisions for life in secret.
In this prison for life, a commissioned private for profit service provider, is in total control, medication enforced by their medical employees without any possible independent intervention.
All that is needed, for this unimaginable hell, is for a citizen to be 18 and suffer from a mental ‘disorder’.
And, for the Local Authority to suspect, or assess they lack the ‘capacity’ to decide for themselves about ‘the restrictions’, the state feels, it needs to impose upon them to ensure their ‘care and treatment’ in their ‘best interests’.
Any advance decision to refuse treatment or support, or a Lasting Power of Attorney, or Deputyship can, and is overridden by the COP, on retrospective ‘incapacity’ grounds.
So all individual autonomy can be lost, and a person’s decisions, made for him by a private appointed by state for profit care and medical provider.
The individual in law becomes a non person.
We are, as far as I am aware, other than in Scotland, the only country in the world were the state is allowed to do this.
So once ‘incapacity’ is even suspected, which can and does happen, if a person is diagnosed with a mental disorder, establishing an MCA ‘impairment of the mind’.
The state has 375 ‘disorders’, including Autistic Spectrum Disorder and Learning Disability to choose from.
And, the MCA list for ‘impairment’ is non exhaustive and can include effects of drink, drugs or medication even if temporary.
So effectively, anyone can have their autonomy removed, if they fail to avoid the state’s mental health detectors.
Once ‘incapacity’ has been found, all that is needed, is for a Deprivation of Liberty application to be made by the Managing Authority, and this authority is the very Care Provider, who will make huge profits from procurement of the citizen..
These providers also own ‘specialist hospitals’, where the citizen can be ‘rehabilitated’ by drugs, and they also own the ‘community living’, where they then spend the rest of their lives.
As Health and Social Care Trusts, increasingly work with these private care providers, and are now effectively paid, and used as ‘best interests’ assessors, and ‘treatment’ providers, for the Managing Authority,( the service provider), there is a huge conflict of interests as their job depends on them doing what their employer wants.
And worse still, The Deprivation of Liberty Application is to the Supervising Authority ,which is the very Local Authority ,who commissions the Managing Authority’s ‘care and treatment’ services.
So, a Managing Authority, whose services are put in place, and approved by a Supervising Authority the LA/HSCT ,are asking, that Authority for permission, to enforce the services, that that Authority commissioned them to provide.
If the Supervising Authority. were to refuse, their commissioned services would be illegal, and in breach of a person’s human rights, and, as commissioners, they would be liable to pay compensation, and be in breach of their statutory duty.
Not surprisingly, therefore, it is unlikely, that any DOL’s application has ever been refused.
Which makes the need for a DOLs authorisation, in practice, a worthless, tick box exercise.
A barely concealed, cynical sop to protection of a citizen’s liberty for life.
The close links between the two Authorities, effectively mean, they are asking permission of themselves.
And, terrifyingly, this is purported by the MCA to be a ‘safeguard’ against the arbitrary removal of a person’s liberty for life.
When in fact it allows it.
Shocking per se, but particularly dangerous, when the services are not independently accountable, and are being run in secret for maximum profit.
In the possible appointments of an Independent Mental Health ‘Advocate’ and/or Registered Relevant Person Service, the MCA gives further tick box, phyric non existent safeguards.
As, these so called ‘advocates/representatives’, cannot, in any event, take part in the Managing Authority’s ‘best interests’ decision, and, may not have even met the incapacitated when the application is made.
Once the LA Supervisory Authority has given the Managing Authority their permission, to deprive a citizen of his liberty, a van and police escort can be sent to the family home, where a doctor/psychiatrist employee attends, to administer ketamine to facilitate removal.
Also to aid removal, it is likely, that neither the family, nor the deemed ‘incapacitated’, will have any idea this might, let alone will happen, and the Deprivation of Liberty Order can be handed over on removal.
All that needs to happen now, is for the Supervising Authority- the LA, who commissioned the services, and would be liable, if inadequate, or illegal, to Review this Deprivation of Liberty, annually for life.
Neither the ‘incapacitated’ nor their family can do anything.
If they are already in, or, apply de novo to the Court of Protection opposing the removal.
An Official Solicitor, will be appointed by the state to act for the incapacitated.
He will support the DOLs , as this is the only support available, and therefore, has to be in a citizen’s ‘best interests’.
s 5 or s8 Human Rights Act actions will be dismissed by holding the DOLs, a proportionate interference by the state.
Judicial Reviews of the Local Authorities decision, are costly, and now legally made effectively impossible.
Applications and appeals by family are dealt with on a case management basis, at a local level, and, will be unsuccessful.
All will be done in secret, and all gagged for life.
This is much, much worse than a Mental Health Act section, as it is in secret, for life, for profit, and a person need not be proved to be a danger to himself or others, but still must remain in the Bedlam, of ‘community living’ for life.
See here standard flowchart checks service providers use to ensure legality of encagement:
Now, look at what, the for profit services, can do inter alia, to any individual for life, once they have this authorisation
use locks or key pads which stop a person going out or into different areas of a building
use medication, for example, to calm a person- ( but why is he upset- is he in pain ?)
close supervision in the home, or the use of isolation- ( is this not emotional abuse ?)
require a person to be supervised when out
restrict contact with friends, family and acquaintances, including if they could cause the person harm (‘including,’ so proof of ‘harm’ not needed,and who decides type of ‘harm’. So at any time parents can be excluded from even visits ).
physically stop a person from doing something which could cause them harm
remove items from a person which could cause them harm
hold a person so that they can be given care, support or treatment ( what is meant by hold, care, and treatment?)
bedrails, wheelchair straps, restraints in a vehicle, and splints- (Thomas Rawnsley at 4ft 10 inches, 18 Downs and autistic was put in splints on removal by 2 male guards).
the person having to stay somewhere against their wishes or the wishes of a family member
repeatedly saying to a person they will be restrained if they persist in a certain behaviour.
This looks like authorised abuse, and not much of a community , or home, certainly not a vestige of independence, and it is for life.
And all this can be routinely imposed upon the vulnerable, by itinerant prescribed workers, in secret unseen, for ever more risk assessed, efficient for maximum profit care.
And here, from workers in Lifeways, now Cambian ‘community living’, gives us the only glimpse of what life is like for the incapacitated.
We have seen Thomas Rawnsley’s hell in his homes Norcott Lodge, owned by Homeleigh, a company bought out with million pound windfalls to owners, by venture capital backed Cambian, who then bought Lifeways, again paying the owners millions, who owned Kingdom House, where Thomas died.
Remember, we pay a minimum of £4,000 per week, and huge drug bills, for each resident, and the worse their behaviour becomes, the more can be claimed for their ‘ care and treatment’.
Here is an Ombudsman’s decision and compensation of an autistic man provided with inadequate Council residential support.
Yet another example of enforced for profit living by LA of a 36 year old forced away from her family and community to live in isolation with inadequate support.
This month The Alzheimer Society reported an all time high in Deprivation of Liberty Orders.