Friday, March 12, 2010


I sometimes buy The Independent on a Friday for the Arts & Books review.
Today I bought it because it had a front page lead article entitled "Human Tragedy and National Scandal" about the case of David Askew, a 64 year old man with learning difficulties, who was subjected to thuggish behaviour for years, and collapsed and died this week after confronting youths outside his house.
This case highlights the fact "supported living in the community" only works when the person receives the correct level of support.
No doubt there will be yet another enquiry by the multiple agencies that failed Mr Askew, and some extremely well paid functionary will apologise profusely and proclaim that "lessons have been learned".

The Arts & Books review contained the long list of books nominated for The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize. Next month the fifteen books will be whittled down to six for the short list.
I had only read two of these books:
Both were brilliant in their own way, and as there is also on that list The Coronation by Boris Akunin, whose books I have really enjoyed in the past, I suspect the judges will have some problems in their deliberations.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Norman - What a tragic story about Mr. Askew! You're right that it highlights the stark difference between giving lip service to "supported living" and truly supporting those who need that support. My thoughts go out to his family. I wonder whether this was a case of the authorities not doing their job, the staff not doing its job, the family not being responsible, or something else. In many ways, it doesn't matter, but still, one can't help but wonder how such things happen. At least I do.

9:49 AM  
Blogger Uriah Robinson said...

Thanks for your concern Margot, unfortunately this is not the first case of its kind in the UK.
I have posted about this situation at some length:

11:39 AM  

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