"It took years!"
It took years for the bureaucrats to accept a mother's cries that her son was totally misplaced in a Victorian government supported accommodation group home for those with an intellectual or multiple disability
This mother, an elderly widow in poor health, reluctantly accepted medical advice to accept a place for her adult son in a Victorian government group home. The medical advice suggested she was getting no younger to provide 24/7 care for her son, and should accept the first offer as places were very scarce.
Like many parents, she soon discovered the level and quality of care left a lot to be desired, and that her middle-aged and vocal son was living with elderly residents having little or no meaningful communications. Consequently, the only people in the house he can meaningfully communicate with, are the direct care staff.
For 20 years, this mother has been chastised and ridiculed by the massive range of government bureaucrats from the various avenues of government which protect government direct service provision from those who dare to assertively question service level and quality.
The captive market bureaucrats further reduced the mother's ability to represent her son, by appointing an employee of the Office of the Public Advocate as her son's guardian. This action finally removed any legal or moral rights this mother might have had to represent her son. It also ensures the government service provider has a pseudo government bed partner. An employee of a pseudo government department (the OPA) is highly unlikely to rock-the-boat with a government department (the DHS).
Where a parent is appointed guardian, they will fully represent their family member against all odds. In total contrast, an employee of a pseudo government department will naturally have most loyalty to their employer, and not wish to cause inter-department problems by fully and assertively representing their client.
After 23 Guardianship Hearings, over 23 years, at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT), the Tribunal finally accepted the son needs to live with more compatible residents.
For over 23 years, this young man has effectively been living/isolated in an aged care facility. His quality of life has declined through receiving little morethan basic minder care, rather than quality of life care with interaction, developmental and social activities with compatible peers.
LISA Comment: This sad story further demonstrates the need for parents to live and fight forever - For reasonable rights for their family member against captive market bureaucrats who seem not to care that a person with limited intellectual capacity has had a large percentage of their already reduced lifestyle further reduced by bureaucratic due-process placement - incompatible DSR placement.
The DHS "Disability Support Register" controls almost all group home places in Victoria - government and non-government. All vacancies must go through the DSR. Clients and their families have no choice of group home service provider.
Nor are they able to choose a government or non government service provider! It is really frustrating for families to hear of wonderful CSO group home service providers who, even if they have a vacancy, are kept behind the DHS DSR firewall.