Walking around a field.

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The council are still deciding, unilaterally, when my sons and I meet for outside contact.

They allow me to go out with Eliot, who's 23, for 2 hours a week, bowling/shopping/exploring the rural environment.

Last week was meant to be shopping, but the staff felt that it was inappropriate since it had been raining in the morning. As we sat in the car, the two of them pointed to moisure on the outside of the windshield, and said 'It's raining", but it wasn't. When I said that the rota said "shopping" I was told that I wasn't thinking of Eliot.

We drove to a trampoline centre, which Eliot "loves". He didn't get on a trampoline. We had coffees. We left.

If my mats are right, the two hours came to:

Wages for staff 2x£15x2 hours= £60. (I'm guessing).
Trampoline centre=£20.
Coffees for staff+£4.00
Petrol+£5.00

A total of £89.

I was told that by qyestioning their decision to abort the shopping, I was putting contact at risk.

Eliot always has two carers with him when he's out because he used to pinch people sometimes when he was angry/upset. He hasn't done it for a year or two. I don't count in these circumstances although he's at home with me three times a week, so there are three adults walking round the precinct with him, sipping coffee, bowling...

I've just talked to one of the two deputy-manageresses (for a two-man residence!), who tells me that the risk-assessment for this year was recently carried out by the staff themselves, and it was though inappropriate to involve Eliot's psychologist because "she doesn't go out with him, does she John?". Nor was I invited. They've decided that it's still necessary for them to 'double up'. This means that Eliot is stuck in the bungalow two days a week.

Anyone else think this stinks?
What about "Denial of Liberty" DOLS I think they call it?
Was it "Flip Out" where they have had many accidents reported, with customers injuring themselves quite severely?
It's insulting that they think you don't know the difference between rain and some moisture on a windscreen!
I don't know the name of the place, but there was some talk of a law-suit about a woman's broken neck.

We went to the psychologist a few years ago, when Eliot was nipping people, and she prescribed Risperidone. Eliot is now much calmer, but the council is keeping to the two (plus me) carers rule when we're having a latte. It feels a bit Hannibal Lectur.

I don't understand why the psychologist was consulted when they doubled-up on carers, but there's no discussion about cutting back now, and it's inappropriate to ask the psychologist for advice "since she doesn't see Eliot when he's shopping; we do"?

I also hadn't realised the the girls at the bungalow were deciding among themselves to double-up.

Rain? If it's precipitating down tomorrow we'll still walk round the field. Odd.
John, what are the qualifications of the staff? The psychologist? When was the last care review done? Annually? I know you live in an even more useless authority than me, but the should be following the rules.
They have reviews, but there are two carers from the unit there, the manager too, plus the line-manager (I think). I find it impossible and humiliating to ask for favours when I know that we've got no chance.

The staff have got NVQs, some sort of lower-rate ones.

It seems that they're having private reviews about e.g. the level of support Eliot needs. Since he can't speak, he won't be at the meetings, I know the family aren't invited, cause I'm the dad, and the psychologist isn't asked. So it's just the girls at the unit....

The last time we were at the trampoline place it was packed, with staff dressed as ninjas doing back-flips... it was unsafe for Eliot or anyone with his disability.

I noticed that the carer today told me that "Eliot does not like to go shopping with you; you have to think about him". For a while there, they used to say "Eliot appears to like/dislike x", because they aren't supposed to put ideas into his mouth.Wonder what happened to that?

Tomorrow, I'll be strapped in the back of the car, and the 'girls' in front will be telling me I'm wrong...about everything.
John,
Most LA's are desperate to save money and would only pay for 2:1 staffing for a very unpredictable and challenging service user. How often does he go out, when you aren't there?

Since Elliot has autism, changing the plan and not going shopping, for the sake of a damp windscreen, was certainly NOT thinking of Elliot.

Melly1
Melly,thanks for posting.
Owen and Eliot are unusual in that they both love variety. The example I use is the bloke who was getting rid of wasps in the loft. When he went through the living-room, O and A didn't react badly; they just looked up for a moment and then went back to what they were doing.

The bowling/shopping/fields rota is three-weekly and staff and I struggle to remember which is which-especially when we've had to change because of the weather,school holidays,etc.

Trampolines are back-up plans for shopping, but if we finish bowling after an hour-as we do because Eliot is more actively involved now that he plays with me-it is 'inappropriate and unfair' to suggest that we stroll round quiet old Newcastle-under-Lyme "because that's next week,isn't it John?". A member of staff who left in disgust suggested that staff are more autistic than Eliot.

The 2:1 rule has been broken at times. Staff generally wait outside shops "to give you some quality time".Someone had to dash to the loo, leaving O and E with just myself (and I don't count) and one carer half way up a bank in a nature-reserve. Sometimes someone will nip into Specsavers...
Remember, my sons, despite being able-bodied, have occupied the only adapted double-bungalow in the area for ten years now... Owen and Eliot are generally a doddle to look after, and staff are racking up those pension points. After the disagreement about bowling on Wednesday, Eliot was taken on a day out on Friday, which meant that I couldn't drop in to see him for a few minutes as I always do (routine? what routine?). I wasn't told where he'd been until Saturday. They'd gone to Southport. An emergency bridge-closure added 2 hours to the time Eliot spent strapped into the back of the car. They didn't phone me to say he'd arrived safely. I had to phone them.
I know I rattle on, but...Owen self-harmed while at day-care a few weeks ago. For some reason seeing some dogs set him to punching himself in the face. Despite that, the next day he came home as usual and we went out for three hours on Saturday. You would have though that perhaps protocols would have meant that we'd have someone assigned to support us, but no. Eliot's always been the cash-cow. With Owen, it's more that staff won't use his free bus-pass (with free transport for carer) but have to guzzle up the petrol with the new car. I imagine that if it was the other way round, it would be "inappropriate to spend Owen's money in that way, given that he has a bus-pass"! One rule for local-government workers, another for the plebs.