Mr Justice Eady has seen fit to grant the first ever gagging order to permanently block publication of material relating to an individual’s private life. Councils and NHS officials can now restrain someone in hospital, care home or re-training facility for as long as the State deems to be to “in their best interests”.
Rulings are being made which stifle any reasonable debate about issues of moral dilemmas and grant unprecedented draconian injunctions which stop discussion of debate with threats of prison and seizure of assets (as per the many terrorism and related Acts).
Supposedly, the Court of Protection has developed a mania for secrecy and they are involved in decisions of life and death of individuals and decisions they make in secret have no accountability. In the case of 20-year old Stephen Neary, who has autism, whose father Mark became ill with flu and asked his local council for assistance until he recovered. Steven was put into the councils care for three days during which his habit of tapping someone on the shoulder to gain their attention was put into the logbook as an “assault”.
Hillingdon declared that they could not cope with Steven and he was “retained” for assessment. His father was refused permission to take him home and the young man was transferred to the ‘Positive Behaviour Unit’ run by the council. Staff there declared that they could alter Steven’s behaviour and tone down his autistic tendencies.
Hillingdon council decided that Steven would never be allowed home again and he was moved to a secure centre in another part of the country – away from the father who had taken care of him for many years and knew his son very well.
The so-called Court of Protection (CoP) and Hillingdon council conspired to keep Steven locked away from his father and the life that had suited him for many years. A public outcry forced the CoP to listen to Mark and an interim order was made to allow Steven back home but it was only due to the matter being publicised before CoP had time to intervene that the matter could be reported.
The Court of Protection claims to operate in the best interests of vulnerable people but when they make rulings that prevent a man from having a sexual relationship for the rest of his life because of his IQ, you have to wonder quite what planet these people come from.
Another woman faces imprisonment if she discusses her daughter’s case with anyone, even her MP – in other words she is being prevented from fighting her corner by an increasing Kafkaesque and draconian system that operates in the shadows to deny people their God-given and inalienable rights.