Older People: Protecting our right to freedom, whatever our age
A 90-year-old retired civil servant with dementia lived in his home of 50 years with his sister until she passed away in 1998. After his friends raised concerns with authorities about his wellbeing, social workers turned up at his home and told him he was to go with them to a hotel. When he resisted, they threatened to call the police. Wearing only his dressing gown, the man was reluctantly taken to a care home. For the next 17 months he was under constant supervision at the home, unable to leave. He might well have remained there for the rest of his life had a close friend not taken legal action to secure his release. A judge ruled that the council had unlawfully detained the man against his wishes, and so breached his human rights to liberty and respect for his home and family life.
For the next 17 months he was under constant supervision at the home, unable to leave.