Outrage after picture emerges on social media showing man in wheelchair overloaded with shopping
A care worker for a charity has been suspended after a photograph appeared on Facebook showing shopping bags piled on a client in a wheelchair.
The image shows a Mencap care worker smoking a cigarette while an elderly man in a wheelchair has his vision obscured by shopping bags heaped upon him somewhere in Leicester.
Charlotte Shaw posted the picture onto the charity’s Facebook page after it was shared on social media.
She wrote: “One of your staff in the Leicestershire area smoking whilst on the phone in Leicester shoving all her shopping bags on top of him with no care in the world.
“I don’t think she should work with vulnerable people.”
Steve Baker, regional director of services at Mencap, responded to Shaw saying the charity had suspended the worker while an investigation takes place.
“We are appalled by what is happening in the picture. After seeing it we immediately took action, and have suspended the support worker in question and reported the issue to the relevant local authority safeguarding team.
“We take the wellbeing of the people we support extremely seriously, and we expect and train our staff to deliver high quality care and support services. What we see here would fall well below that standard.”
This response by the charity received over 50,000 “likes” from Facebook users.
Baker added: “Our priority now, as always, is ensuring that we offer the highest quality of care to our beneficiaries so they live the lives they choose.”
Facebook user Victoria Evans responded: “Well done to the woman who took the photo and shared it. In this day and age there are those who would turn away and say it's not their place to criticise. But she did the right, and brave, thing and thanks to all who shared Mencap have been able to prevent a vulnerable person from being mistreated.”