HC Deb 05 December 1995 vol 268 c131
9. Mr. Thurnham

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will clarify the criteria used to assess voluntary groups providing high standards of care in residential settings for those with challenging behaviour, in respect of the application of necessary minimum levels of proper discipline and restraint. [2181]

Mr. Bowis

Regulations require that the owners and managers of homes should both safeguard and promote the welfare of residents. We expect statutory authorities to ensure that service providers should have clear, written policies on the management of people who may cause harm to themselves or others.

Mr. Thurnham

Does my hon. Friend agree that it is not an easy job to look after the severely mentally handicapped, and that common-sense disciplines should prevail over fashionable, impractical social services' ideologies which are certainly not in the best interests of the residents themselves?

Mr. Bowis

My hon. Friend is entirely right. When we are talking about difficult to manage individuals, we must ensure that the restraint and control used are sufficient to prevent a person from hurting himself or herself, other people or property. That is common sense, which must always take precedence over political correctness.