83.Memorandum from My Life Choice Association
We are a self-advocacy group made up of people
with learning difficulties. We have talked about the draft Incapacity
Bill in our local groups and at our Open Meeting in July. We are
worried about the bill; this is what people have said:
"This law is a problem, lots of deaf people
with learning difficulties will have a big problem with their
choices and rights. Also, black and Asian people with learning
difficulties and deaf/blind people with learning difficulties."
"People with learning difficulties should
have the power to make difficult choices."
"Who has the money? People with learning
difficulties pay Social Services to look after us, so we should
have the control to make decisions."
"This law will not encourage people to find
different ways of communicating with people with learning difficulties."
"Advocates CAN be good IF they listen, really
get to know the person and get good information about a decision."
"The fact of life is that a lot of carers,
etc are not good at listening or finding different ways to communicate.
Will this Bill mean a quick way to make a decision for someone
that is more about what the carer, etc wants?"
"The title is bad. It is hard to understand
and is negative. It should be called something positive, like
"They should never separate a baby from
its mother, even if the mother can't speak."
"This Bill may get rushed through, which
means people get pushed out!"
"The Government should have asked people
like us what we think FIRST."
"There hasn't been enough time for us to
give feedback, ideas, etc."
"It makes us worried about our rights."
We unsure about what the law would mean to people:
"Will it become an easy way for people with
learning difficulties to be told, `you will do this?
"What happens if someone makes a decision
you don't agree with?"
We had some positive comments about the bill:
"This Bill may help those people who are
unable to make some decisions, who otherwise would be unable to
get on in life."
"We would like to talk to people about the
Bill like someone from Parliament."
"It writes down that you need to put effort
into asking people with learning difficulties what they think."
"In our lives, people shouldn't do it, but
should support us to do it."
We hope that you will listen to our comments
and think about our concerns carefully.