“He thought he was in prison”

I urge everyone to sign this.
Dr. Linda Buchan
Consultant Clinical Psychologist
& Director of Axia ASD Ltd.

“I don’t want anyone else to go through what he did”

2,260 people on the autism spectrum or with a learning disability are in mental health hospitals in England. My wonderful son Matthew used to be one of them.

Help reduce these numbers by signing this important petition before it closes on 6 May.

Matthew spent 15 months in an Assessment and Treatment Unit (ATU). I was told this would be somewhere he would be for a short time while the right community support was found for him. But not only did this not happen but his physical and mental health got much, much worse. He thought he was in prison, and all we wanted was to get him home.

I don’t want anyone else to go through what we did.

These places can be completely inappropriate – noisy, bright and unpredictable – leaving autistic people completely overwhelmed and triggering extreme levels of anxiety. This in turn can increase the risk of restraint, seclusion and over-medication.

After campaigning for many months for my son’s safety, a review of his care found that a crisis “could have been predicted and potentially prevented”. There must be other solutions to detaining people indefinitely in mental health hospitals.

Like many of you, I signed the open letter to Health Secretary Matt Hancock asking him to end this national scandal.

We need to keep the pressure up on the government to take this issue seriously.

Find out more and follow the hashtag #HumanToo on social media.

Thank you for your support,
Isabelle Garnett
Mum, Campaigner and Founder of #HumanToo

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2 comments on ““He thought he was in prison”
  1. Helen Jones says:


  2. Linda says:

    Thank you Helen
    I hope many more of you sign

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