A vulnerable great-grandmother faces eviction from her care home today after her daughter made an ‘unauthorised window visit’.
Elizabeth Bow, who suffers from dementia, was visited by her police officer daughter Denise Hobbs.
The 78-year-old is currently living in Aspen Hill Village in Leeds, which has said it is evicting the former nurse because Denise breached visitation policy by trying talk to her frail mother through an open patio door.
Denise told the Daily Express : “My mum is being evicted just because I love her and want to see her.”
The care home have denied any suggestion that Elizabeth is being removed from the home as a ‘revenge eviction’.
The family now face the agony of finding new accommodation for Elizabeth, affectionately known as Anne, just weeks before Christmas.
Do you have a similar care home story? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Tearful Denise, 53, thinks her mother is yet another victim of the disturbing rise in so-called revenge evictions, which punish families who dare to voice concerns about care standards – a claim the care home denies.
Denise said: “I am anxious, upset, angry and bewildered – we just don’t know where mum is going to go yet. She is aware something is going on but whether she understands…”
Anne, a great-grandmother of 12, worked as an auxiliary nurse at Stirling Hospital in her native Scotland and later in a care home in Scarborough.
She moved into Aspen Hill on April 29 during the height of the Covid crisis after the family was told she could have a room with patio window and visits would be allowed.
Denise or one of her four sisters visited every day and staff would open the patio window so they could see her.
But then Denise made an unsolicited visit.
Denise claimed: “During a visit on October 4, mum’s patio door was open so I went straight to it. After a couple of minutes a nurse and the senior carer were in the room. They told me I wasn’t allowed to be there.
“Seeing my mum lying in her bed, knowing she had not been out of her room for any interaction or fresh air for 39 days, I became upset…and through tears asked if my mum was now a prisoner. I now stand accused of making staff anxious, which is preposterous.”
She is convinced her mum has been punished in revenge for the unsolicited patio door visit and comments she posted on a private Facebook group.
Aspen Hill Village director Dr Shahz Ahmed said: “We categorically refute any suggestion this was a revenge eviction because Mrs Moreton [Anne’s daughter] raised concerns on a Facebook site.
“We operate an open door policy and the manager welcomes all residents and their families to raise concerns directly.
“Unfortunately, our continued reasonable requests to adhere to our visiting policy…has led to an irreconcilable breakdown in our relationship with Mrs Bow’s family.”
Jayne Connery, director of Care Campaign for the Vulnerable, said: “We are calling for an independent review on every eviction served in care homes.”
Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said the Government hopes to allow friends and family to visit those living in care homes in the lead up to Christmas.
Speaking to Times Radio, Mr Jenrick said 20 care home visiting pilots were being implemented, which the Government could learn from.
“Our hope is that we’ll be able to offer friends and loved ones the ability to go visit their family members in care homes over the course of this month,” he said.
“There’s 400,000 people in care homes in England, so that’s a big task in itself, but as many of those people as possible, we hope to be able to have family members visiting them in the lead up to Christmas.
“And I think that’s absolutely right, because it’s one of the most heart-breaking aspects of the virus that people have been separated from those who are very vulnerable, who they would dearly love to see.”
Asked if he wanted to be in a position where people can hold the hand of a relative in a care home this Christmas, Mr Jenrick replied: “Absolutely… we’ve all seen the scenes, and I think most of us know friends or neighbours who are in that position. It is truly heart-breaking. It is a big task. Because as I say, there’s 400,000 people and there are tens of thousands of care home settings across the country.
“But if the 20 pilots are successful, then we’ll be able to start rolling that out across the country and we’d obviously like to try to reach as many of those candidates as possible before Christmas.”
*story by Mirror Online