A mum of an autistic son has led a wave of support for a rural care home after fears were raised by its neighbours.
Gillian Hinds joined many in hitting back at comments made at last week’s planning meeting after an application to increase the age of young people who can stay in a rural care home was granted.
The home in Haighton, in rural Preston, homes up to six young people with autistic spectrum disorders or learning difficulties and had a change of condition approved to cater for young people under the age of 25, rather than under 19.
But residents close to the Cow Hill property said they had deep concerns about the change leaving the 54-year-old Hoghton mum outraged over the “ridiculous comments”.
“These people really need educating about autism,” she said. “People want to have these places but just not where they live. These are people with autism not mass murderers.”
Gillian was referring to comments made by resident Jane Hill, who said she had “considerable concerns” about her personal safety when the original application was considered and from bosses at nearby stables who said they had concerns about the welfare of their horses, staff and livelihood.
“These young adults would be supported 24 hours a day seven days a week and although it can sometimes be hard and difficult to deal with, they deserve to live in the community like everyone else,” said Gillian, who has a 20-year-old son with autism.
And Angie White, clearly agreed, posting on Facebook: “OMG are these people serious? They have autism they will have carers looking after them. Get a grip. Can’t believe what I’m reading.”
The comments against the application came despite regional operations manager for Priory Group, which runs the home, saying there would be no extra activity in the home.