Charity calls for punishment of providers failing to disclose abuse

Care home providers who fail to disclose alleged abuse should be punishable by law, a national charity has said.

Action on Elder Abuse director Stephen McCarthy made the call after a court hearing revealed that managers at a Carlisle care home failed to disclose abuse allegations against a senior care assistant.

Mr McCarthy told the News & Star: “Care providers, along with other professionals in a position of trust, such as GPs, should be required by law to report known or suspected cases of elder abuse to the relevant local authority safeguarding teams, who in turn should collaborate with the police where necessary. There should be legal consequences when that does not happen, as appears to be the case here.”

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During the court hearing, care assistant and whistle blower Rosalind Mitchell of Harker Grange Nursing Home said she had been angered to learn that her managers had told her colleague James Gale that he would face no further action if he resigned over abuse allegations.

Mr Gale was convicted during the hearing on three counts of abusing vulnerable elderly residents.

Mr McCarthy added: “Without that duty to disclose we are only likely to see more situations like this where, but for the admirable intervention of the likes of Rosalind Mitchell, abusers can simply move on to another job with vulnerable people, raising the likelihood that they will offend again.

“We applaud the CQC for closing down this irresponsible and unsafe service. We just wish there were greater consequences for those who allowed sub-par care to occur in the first place.”

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