Mencap urges support for families of people with learning difficulties

Mencap today called for more support for families of people with a learning difficulty after Wendolyn Markcrow was given a suspended sentence for killing her son.

Markcrow smothered her son Patrick due to the pressure of caring for him, Oxford Crown Court heard. She then attempted suicide at her home.

She admitted her son’s manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

Learning difficulty charity Mencap today warned that thousands of families caring for people with profound or severe learning difficulties at home are struggling to cope.

Jo Williams, chief executive of the charity, said: “We want local authorities to urgently address families’ needs, planning services with families themselves, deciding how to spend money on short breaks and monitor the impact on families.”

She added that the government should monitor what local authorities are doing to respond to growing demand by outing more money into services.

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