End the segregation of Disabled people in UK educational residential settings, where abuse is rife and private companies profit

ALLFIE’s collective campaign to end the systematic abuse of Disabled people in UK residential ‘care’ settings

Across the UK, Disabled people are trapped in residential settings and care homes, where abuse is rife and private companies can profit off their imprisonment.

ALLFIE and other Disabled People’s Organisations have formed a collective, to take action and demand change, as we are increasingly outraged and frustrated by the scale and frequency of scandals involving Disabled people, including with Learning Difficulties and autism. Disabled children and Young people are being exposed to neglect, violence, torture, rape and death in long stay hospitals and residential care institutions, often dual-registered children’s homes/‘special’ schools. A damning catalogue of evidence of this in the UK spans over a decade. To make matters worse, this has all taken place at taxpayers’ expense, and increasingly in a culture of gross capital gain, profiteering and corruption. Intervention by the Government and relevant authorities has repeatedly fallen flat, being too late, not enough, or in the wrong direction.

Despite repeated government promises to end the institutionalisation of Disabled people, including children and young people, remain imprisoned for no crime. Disabled people want to be supported to live in the home of their choice near to friends and family, not locked in faraway homes and wards, where they are often subject to abuse, and where state, private corporations, and charities, make profits off their incarceration. We want a plan from Government to free Disabled people from unjust and abusive incarceration and meet their support needs in their communities.

While education, health and social care is being underfunded, profits are being made through incarceration and segregated provision in which Disabled people are subjected to tactics of violence, harm and torture. This is a historical systemic failing, recently re-highlighted by the BBC, Guardian and ALLFIE:

"The failures behind the scandals, by contrast, are rooted in systems that are massively opaque. In the case of children’s homes and residential schools, the bodies responsible include Ofsted, local councils and a tangle of profit-making companies." (Guardian, April 2023)

The statistics speak for themselves: The top 20 private providers making £250m+ in annual profits, alongside a 9% cut in funding per pupil (Guardian)

Enough is enough. The ‘End Torture of Disabled People’ campaign demands an end the structural and systemic practice of segregation of Disabled children and Young people in all its forms.

We call on the UK government to:

1.   End the torture, violence and abuse against Disabled children and adults across all service provisions and institutions (private, charities and state)

2.     Immediately re-launch investigation into the torture, sexual violence and deaths of Disabled people in these institutions

3.     Hold all commissioners, staff and professional involved in placing Disabled people in institutions to account - to be sacked and charged for these inhumane acts

4.     Put a stop to Disabled children and adults being placed in residential institutions - these are not homes

5.     Fully resourced and investment into Independent Living community-based support and inclusive education provisions

6.     Commissioners must be held account for spending public money and placing Disabled people into segregated institutions

7.     Put the money in the hands of Disabled people and not businesses through Personal Budgets and Direct Payments, to allow Disabled people to buy their support and services and have choice and control

8.     Fully implement a National Independent Living Service that would achieve inclusive education and address these issues


Letter Campaign by
Catherine Bebbington
London, United Kingdom