Family backs campaign for Minister for Older People following mother’s death

Argyle House

A family has backed a campaign for the creation of a Minister for Older People after their mother died after a fall from a chair in a care home.

The family members threw their support behind the Daily Express campaign after their mother, Valerie May Hawksworth, died from her injuries following a fall from a chair at Argyle House in Northampton, which is run by Countrywide Care Homes.

Mrs Hawksworth’s daughters, Cathryn and Joanne, said they believed the accident could have been avoided and have backed calls for CCTV cameras to be installed in all communal areas of care homes. The family said they were no closer to knowing what happened to their mother.

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Leading campaigner for CCTVs in care homes, Jayne Connery, said: “In such a technological age why is no effort made by many care providers to adopt systems that would confirm to these families what exactly happened?”

A Countrywide Care Homes spokesperson told The Express: “It is very difficult for us to make detailed comment at this stage because the investigation is being led by external safeguarding teams.

“We are, of course, co-operating fully with this. We would however disagree strongly with any suggestion this incident occurred as a result of the lack of staff on duty.”

An inquest into Mrs Hawksworth’s death has been opened and adjourned until November.

Northamptonshire Police added: “Reports are being prepared on behalf of the coroner ahead of the resumed inquest.”

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