Independent

Here’s an independent soul. A pain to catch in Pokemon Go this morning. Definitely independent.

When I managed public sector procurements and groups. Independent meant INDEPENDENT. If I broke those rules I would be sacked and if serious enough prosecuted. I knew a few people who ended up in prison for not being independent in public office.

The BBC has a management body that basically runs the company. Determines its approach to news. Is supposed to ensure it’s impartiality. For years that largely worked. That’s why BBC News was so valued internationally.

This week the Government appointed a new member to the BBC Board. A person who has worked for the ruling Conservative Party at a high level. He also happens to be the brother of the current Government Minister for Schools. Remember him, he was the one who said kids taking time off for bereavement were having ‘extended holidays’. He joins on the Independent BBC Board the Government appointed chairman of the BBC who has previously donated £400000 to the Conservative Party. He also joins another appointee who was a Conservative Party Counsellor.

Then on top of that the Government tried to put a very controversial Newspaper Friend in charge of the countries independent Media Regulator. That failed but there is always a way. The person put in charge was less controversial but is the wife of the former editor and political commentator of the biggest Conservative backing newspaper.

Independence……

A much missed quality these days here.

The future

The National Autistic Society has carried out research on the reality of adults living with autism spectrum disorders. It’s a sobering read.

I just want to highlight some specific lines in the report.

49% of adults with autism or Asperger syndrome are still living at home with their parents. 65% of these adults have had no community care assess- ments and are therefore unlikely to be known to the statutory agencies who should be supporting them.

31% of adults at the lower end of the autism spectrum are still being cared for at home, despite their high level needs. 45% of parents believed their son or daughter required 24-hour care, and only 15% thought they could live in sheltered or shared accommodation.

Only 3% of adults at the higher end of the autism spectrum are living fully independently, and a further 8% are living independently with some regular professional or family support.

As the report points out Families are picking up the care responsibilities in the UK associated with autism. Repeated Government’s have buried their heads in the sand. The current government unbelievably has probably set the bar even lower.

Like many families around the UK (and worldwide) my thoughts are increasingly focusing on the future. What will happen to Hawklad as an adult in our society which is so badly setup for those on the spectrum. Let’s just say that its currently not an entirely reassuring feeling I have. Yes I’m worried.