21-year-old autistic boy shackled to hospital bed – parents beg for help from officials

Bronwyn and Allan Pascoe were horrified when they entered an Australian hospital to find their 21-year-old son, James, who suffers from autism, had been shackled to his bed.

JAMESPASCO

by Closer Staff |
Published on

James, who was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder when he was two years old was tied down to his bed when he was admitted to the Northern Hospital in Victoria on 21 November.

Bronwyn and Allan claim they begged the Australian Department for Human Services for more support in the treatment of their vulnerable son but say their pleas have fallen upon deaf ears.

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James is prone to lashing out when anxious or scared but Bronwyn and Allan rightly believe there has to be another option for their son.

When they found him, they started a petition on Change.org which has already gathered well over 40,000 signatures.

On the page, they wrote: “We've worked so hard to care for him and to make sure he can live a full and happy life.

Bronwyn made the photos to show people James' plight
Bronwyn made the photos to show people James' plight

“But after giving up employment to stay at home, reducing our income, paying for carers, and being brought to depths of despair and exhaustion we could not imagine – we pleaded for the government to help us.

“Last week he turned 21 years old, and he spent his birthday shackled to a hospital bed – the government is refusing to fund his support needs properly, so have abandoned him in hospital.”

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James’ therapist, Jeanette Coombes, has spoken out in support of Bronwyn and Allan, saying:

“In my professional perspective the longer he is in this environment the higher his trauma response will be”.

A spokesperson for the Department of Human Service also responded to their claims.

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In a statement they told the Daily Mail Australia:

“James was admitted to the Northern Hospital by his family. While several options for support have been offered for James’ long term care, these options have not so far been accepted by his family.”

“The department will continue to work with James and his family to make sure he gets appropriate and quality care.”

To find out more about James’ story, click here.

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