Bolton fined over treatment of youth

    A council has been fined £30,000 for failing to find
    suitable accommodation for a teenager with learning difficulties,
    which forced him to spend 18 months on an adult psychiatric
    ward.

    Hospital staff were unable to care for the 18-year-old autistic
    boy who was constantly sedated and denied his liberty, his mother
    told a local government ombudsman.

    Bolton Council said it made mistakes and that it had changed its
    procedures for dealing with people with complex needs.

    Ombudsman Patricia Thomas found the council guilty of
    maladministration causing injustice.

    The teenager, who needed constant support, was sectioned within
    days of leaving a residential school in January 2002. The next
    month a mental health tribunal recommended the teenager be
    transferred from the hospital to an appropriate home as soon as
    possible.

    But the council took more than a year to deal with the
    recommendation and failed to answer an official complaint by the
    boy’s mother within time limits.

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