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Provision of services to intellectually disabled man (13HDC01204)
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Disability service provider ~ Caregiver ~ Appropriate care ~
Complaints process ~ Rights 4(1), 10(3)
A man, aged 35 years, with a significant intellectual
impairment, lived at home with his mother, his primary caregiver.
The man had limited eyesight in his left eye, but was independent
with his personal cares. He spoke very little English.
A disability service provider was contracted to assist with the
man's daily activities in the community for two days per week. The
disability service provider utilised "Personal Care" funding to
provide a "Community Engagement" programme for the man.
The disability service provider arranged for the man's services
to be provided by a caregiver. The caregiver also spoke very
limited English and did not speak any of the man's first language.
The man and the caregiver communicated by way of signs, gestures
and simple English words. The caregiver had not undertaken any
On multiple occasions the caregiver took the man to his (the
caregiver's) home, where the man watched television for lengthy
periods. On one occasion the caregiver slept while the man watched
television. On a number of occasions the caregiver pinched the
man's ears, hit him on the head and engaged in rough play. The
caregiver left the man alone in a vehicle while he was fishing or
shopping. The caregiver took the man with him while he did his
son's paper round.
The man's sister complained to the disability service provider
about the services provided to her brother. The disability service
provider conducted an investigation but did not interview the man.
A resolution meeting was unsuccessful.
It was held that the caregiver breached Right 4(1) for failing
to provide services to the man with reasonable care and skill.
The disability service provider breached Right 4(1) for failing
to have in place adequate systems and processes to provide safe and
appropriate services for the man, and Right 10(3) for failing to
facilitate the fair, simple and speedy resolution of the
The Director of Proceedings decided not to take proceedings
against the caregiver.
The Director of Proceedings filed a claim at the Human Rights
Review Tribunal which proceeded by agreement. The Human Rights
Review Tribunal made a declaration that the disability services
provider had breached Right 4(1) of the Code.