The guy doesn’t have the mental capability to understand sex. I fail to see the problem here. Denying him the ability to have sex is no different from denying an 8 year old the same right. The fact that he’s physically older doesn’t make a damn bit of difference if he can’t handle it mentally.
This is the same council (Newcastle) who paid for a heterosexual disabled man to fly to Amsterdam to have sex with prostitutes.
Hypocrisy or what.
The article says:
“A year later, while sharing local council accommodation with another man, a relationship developed, involving penetrative anal sex (active and passive) as well as kissing, mutual masturbation and oral sex. There is no suggestion that the sexual activity and reports of inappropriate behaviour were linked.”"
“”Nonetheless, the local council intervened, claiming that Alan, who, with an IQ of just 48, is classified as having a mild to moderate learning disability, “lacked capacity to consent to sexual relations”. An order was placed restricting further sexual contact and a regime of close supervision was put in place.”"
Clearly he was capable of understanding and developing a relationship that developed sexually.
Jeez, Pink News is worse than the Daily Mail for hysterical claims! Any excuse to scream homophobia when this has nothing to do with his sexual orientation, but everything to do with the fact that he has an IQ of 48.
If gay people could be wiser about how they use the word ‘homophobic’, then we wouldn’t have such trouble proving genuine cases of it. Don’t cry wolf, especially when whoever wrote this scaremongering piece of crap is probably not privvy to the details of the case (which was held behind closed doors, for obvious reasons). The author ought to be sacked, particularly for quoting some ill-informed blogger.
People don’t just get barred from having sex for no reason, it has been determined it is dangerous for his health – and possibly that of others. This man apparently flashed/carried out a sex-act in front of children in a dental surgery and on a bus (other sources state), yet didn’t understand why that was wrong. Surely that is some indication of his ability to engage in sexual relations safely, responsibly and in full understanding of what he is doing. It may also be a way to stop him from getting exploited by revolting, yet mentally competent, men who prey on his disability. They haven’t stopped him masturbating, which infers that sex with someone else is what is causing the problem.
It’s the same priciple as why you don’t let an adult with an IQ of 48 drive a forklift – they don’t understand what’s going on and pose a danger to themselves and others around them.
I despair with Pink News sometimes, I really do. Everything has to be bloody homophobic!
Well said mmmmmmmm and Nathan
You are so right. Its just not news.
Again, your hysteria is just mindboggling. People with disabilities get sent to prostitutes because they are of sound mind, yet the lack of sexual activity may be hugely detrimental to their mental health. Every disability is different, you cannot just make sweeping generalisations of them – as a trans woman, you should understand that! There is no hypocrisy in this, each case is treated differently, as it should be. A friend of mine worked in a German psychiatric unit which would pay for prostitutes for one particular man. Why? Because his behaviour became so violent when his sexual urges built up that he was unmanageable. After sex, he was subdued, cooperative and otherwise mild-mannered, which made both his and the lives of the carers and other patients easier, not to mention it saved a stack of money. Prostitution is legal there, it can be offered as a service, like in The Netherlands. This wouldn’t happen if there weren’t reasons to do so. Do you understand that each case is different? Stop trying to make it seem unfair when you have stupidly made a comparison between two totally different cases.
Conflating the case of the man with an IQ of 48 and from a totally different set of circumstances, is, to be frank, dense. He was not ‘clearly capable of understanding and developing a relationship’. He did have a relationship, but it doesn’t mean he understood what he was doing. That relationship may have become abusive or detrimental to his overall health. You are too quick to scream homophobia and prejudice. Especially when this man is going to be monitored – presumably to see if the situation changes and he can be allowed sexual relations, though at his age, I doubt that will happen.
You are just looking for reasons to hate the legal system and to make every court decision seem unjustified. This is why people like you should never go near a judiciary or anyone who actually needs solid, impartial advice. Every single time you write something, it’s the same whining, paranoid , the-world-is-out-to-get-us-all piffle that does so much damage to the advancement of LGBT rights.
Whether “Alan” is gay or straight, this judgement is simply appalling and they really seem to be grasping at straws with the health risks issues. The guy is in what seems to be a loving and monogamous relationship (something that can only be beneficial for him), so there are very few health risks involved.
This seems to me to be another case for disabled people being denied a sexuality but the ignorant majority.
That’s a very heavy charge to lay against the judiciary. Are you privvy to information on the case that the rest of us are not? Do you have any proof that he was in a loving and monogamous relationship? This case was held behind closed doors at the Court of Protection – it must have been incredibly serious to get that far. The psychiatrist said:
“A psychiatrist told the judge in the Court of Protection that Alan thinks sex causes ‘spots or measles’ and that babies are ‘delivered by a stork or found under a bush.’ The psychiatrist added that sex education would leave Alan ‘confused.’”
Now that is quite serious. Add to that:
“The judge said that this case was legally, intellectually and morally complex as sex is ‘one of the most basic human functions’ and that the court must handle the case carefully. But he said that a test of a person’s capacity to consent to sex could be carried out based on their understanding of the act itself. This requires an understanding of the ‘mechanics of the act,’ an understanding that there are health risks involved, and an understanding that sex between a man and a woman leads to pregnancy. He highlighted the fact that the court cannot prevent people making ‘unwise’ decisions.”
A great deal of consideration of MANY aspects has clearly gone into this decision. Psychiatrists, care home workers, the police (when he behaved inappropriately in front of childre, but not charged)….everyone possible has been consulted.
He hasn’t actually been BANNED from having sex, but local authorities have been afforded powers to PREVENT him having sex. Not only that, but the judge has ordered that the local authority provide this man (Alan) with sexual education in the hope that he may gain that capacity and a review should take place in 9 months time. Seems fair enough to me.
If you want to read the judgement for youselves, it’s here:
Too many people making rash decisions with no evidence – thank goodness none of you are judges!
Hmmm. Back at all of you :)
Yes: tis easy to read too much into what hasn’t been said, and there may be stuff we are not privy to. But here – as someone who regularly does case analysis – is my take on what just went down. First, the issue over kids has nothing whatsoever to do with whether he is or is not capable of consenting to sex.
There is no circumstance i am aware of at present in the UK where an individual is barred from having sex with a consenting non-related partner.
Therefore raising stuff about his attitude to kids really is off the main track. We don’t bar paedophiles from having sex. We don’t even bar rapists from ditto.
So read this case as what it is: an inquiry into whether someone has ability to consent. And the court, in its wisdom, narrowed that to three criteria. Of those, only one was held to be relevant or potentially failed – and that was whether he understood the health implications of having anal sex.
So. Those getting on their high horses over whether this is really a good absolute test of whether he should be allowed, do tell: do you reckon every partner you’ve ever had, every guy on the scene fully understands the health risks of having anal sex?
And if they don’t, are you seriously suggesting they should be barred from having sex until such time as they sort their education out. Puh-lease!
At base, the case isn’t complex at all. Sure, if you get into the minutiae of what constitutes consent it starts to be. But maybe its worth taking a step backward and asking why that needs to be in there at all.
The guy does something, he enjoys it, there is risk attached. A bit like cooking a three-day old beefburger (should the court also check he understands all the health risks involved in food preparation?).
No. I think the first principle in operation here is the sex-plus rule, which is that any lawful action instantly becomes suspect the moment S-E-X gets added. We don’t patrol the rest of our lives like this: why patrol sex?
Second, the child incident is a total red herring, but it allowed the council to pose as concerned.
Third, and i have no direct evidence for this, i think there is general ickiness about anal sex, and guys having anal sex and…a disabled guy getting sexual pleasure.
Shouldn’t happen. Its just wrong. That sort of thinking. So the council homed in on this aspect of Alan’s life in a way they wouldn’t have done if, say, he’d been having sex with a woman.
And third, the solution is all topsy-turvy. If there was a health education risk involved, why on earth weren’t the council sorting that out off their own bat? Why, when faced with a choice between helping a guy with little else going for him enjoy his life, and just controlling and stopping him, did they go for the second option?
Nah. There are definitely elements of disability discrimination here: and possibly some very basic thinking about gay rights… and people should be worrieder than they seem to be.
It looks like a serious violation of human rights. More detail needed.
I just wish the article hadn’t gone in to the gory details. *vom*
Disabled people have long and often been denied a consensual adult sex life by people who have power over them. Any homophobia involved here seems irrelevant, as I’m sure if “Alan” had been female, they would have tried to stop the sexual activity on similar health grounds, plus the additional risk of pregnancy.
If the only grounds he was deprived of his right to a sex life was his lack of understanding of health risks, then the decision must be wrong. On that basis at least half the country would be denied the right to have sex. And perhaps more than that in the case of the developing world.
No one is required to take a “driving test” before they have sex. Though some may think we all should!
The whole point about his attitude to kids was whether he could differentiate the apprpriateness of sexual relations between a consenting adult and a (non-)consenting child. He couldn’t (as exhibited by his flashing at them), which is why he was a) not arrested (a sex offender is deemed to be an offender because he/she can understand what sex is, consensual or otherwise) and b) monitored.
The anal sex part – you are overreacting on a paranoid scale. It is a very weak, naive and petty argument that doesn’t deserve any attention. And, no, you don’t have any evidence for that hypothesis and it is therefore not appropriate that you try to submit it as such.
You have obviously NOT read the judgement, the evidence and the proposals for action given that it suggests Alan receive sex education and does not BAN him from having sex, but gives his carers/authorities the power to PREVENT him doing so where a danger to his own or the health of others is posed. I have already said that, READ THE COMMENTS!
There is no disability rights or gay rights descrimination here, it is simply one of those very rare cases where someone has to have their human rights curbed for their own safety. 9 year olds are not allowed to have sex because they don’t understand what it is and do not have the maturity to make an informed decision (not forgetting the biological implications). A 41-year old with an IQ of 48 is really not much different.
READ THE BLOODY JUDGEMENT ON THE LINK ABOVE!
Christ, are you people even capable of reading a thread!
This case is no different to the many cases of down syndrome people being forcibly sterilised (it happens still in the UK) or for judges rulings down syndrome people cant get married.
We need to get away from court rulings that are based on society’s embarrassment of disabled people living full enjoyable lives that can also be sexually fulfilling.
This isn’t about knowing the dangers of sexual intercourse – STIs, physical injury, exploitation etc. People who have never been educated on those subjects will understand them once explained. The man in this case, even when presented with all the facts, cannot actually understand them at all. Not even close. Aside from that, he does not understand what is appropriate and inappropriate sexual behaviour – such as the flashing and…..well, just read the sodding judgement and you will maybe understand a bit better.
Everyone here is too quick to cry discrimination. In this case, it is simply not there.
mmmm (or however many m’s you have):
i’m not going to rehash detail, as it is open to anyone to read the judgement, as i guess you have and as i most certainly did, before writing, aided by a lawyer who has expertise in COP issues.
So at very least there is room within the legal profession for serious difference of opinion by experts here: and for you to assert that the decision can only possibly be interpreted one way seems a bit blinkered.
Some lawyers do think it is wrong: ergo, there is room for legal argument around it.
You’re drawing a link between the incident with children and the subsequent decision that just isn’t in the case. After much contemplation, the judge boiled the criteria down to three.
He could, had he felt it appropriate, have added the foruth about distinguishing on age, which you have invented. But he didn’t.
I’ve also read the comments…and i passed over the distinction you attempted to make the first time between the guy being banned and the LA being given powers to prevent him having sex as being one that makes no real difference.
I’d pass over it again, except that you seem to think it means something.
If the police are given powers to exclude you from an area, you are, in effect, banned from it, barred from it, whatever.
If you are trying to argue that ther is no penal notice attached and/or no instant consequences for Alan, that may be so…but in order to exercise its preventative role, the LA would take steps that would have the effect of restricting Alan’s freedom up to and including having him locked up in an institution or chemically coshed.
Those steps are not explicit in this decision – but they are certainly implied.
I tell you what, you are just the worst!
Do you know what Downs is? If a Downs woman gets pregnant, it can actually kill her (though most female Downs are actually infertile and Downs men are almost 100% infertile – only a few cases have ever been recorded). They suffer very high rates of miscarriage, premature birth and complicated/painful pregnancies and labour. As if their constipation wasn’t bad enough in every day life, it gets worse when they are pregnant. Children born to a Downs mother will also almost always have Downs. How will the mother cope with that without losing any independence she did have? Not to mention the other contributing factors: enlarged heart (congenital heart disease) and other organs increases chances of death in labour or pregnancy. Couple that with a very-short lifespan, low IQ and ability to grasp the seriousness or science of many aspects of daily life – what kind of life will the mother and child have? A very terrifying one, probably. Some Downs people are affected much more than others and some can actually cope, but it is rare and very dangerous. Oh, and of course, the mother will probably only live until about 30 years of age, leaving the child motherless at a very young age.
But, in the name of YOUR idea of unquestionable freedom for all, do you think it’s fair we let a Downs woman, who has no real understanding of contraception, get pregnant? Be terrified in pregnancy and birth, because she isn’t able AT ALL to understand what is happening? Die in childbirth or during pregnancy because of her enlarged organs and boewl problems? Starting/having periods for Downs girls is often incredibly frightening, not to mention painful. Remember, sterilisation stops those too, not just pregnancy.
There is nothing in this that is to do with ‘embarrassment’ of disability, it is purely for the safety and health of the individual.
You are an affront to rational thinking and the interests of people with disabilities. None of these decisions are easy or desirable, but the consequences of not taking them are much, much worse for the individual.
Learn to think about others for a change.
There is nothing blinkered in what I have said – nor in what the judge concluded, as he set a review for 9 months time.
“I’ve also read the comments…and i passed over the distinction you attempted to make the first time between the guy being banned and the LA being given powers to prevent him having sex as being one that makes no real difference.”
Erm, being banned, means being prohibited FULL STOP. Having the power to PREVENT, means that if a situation arises in which this man having sex with someone else is deemed dangerous, he can be stopped. Or, where it is not dangerous, he can be permitted. You and this apparent lawyer of yours obviously cannot distinguish between ‘prevent’ and ‘ban’. Don’t think I’d hire that lawyer’s services!
“If the police are given powers to exclude you from an area, you are, in effect, banned from it, barred from it, whatever.”
Here you go again getting muddled up. The police have the power to exclude you. They have not excluded you permanently or totally. A ban is outright and requires no consultation. Prevention occurs when there is a perceived danger, it is not permanent or beyond consultation. People aren’t prevented from smoking in pubs the power invested in the landlord, they are banned from doing so by a law. Substitute smoking for sex and you get Alan being prevented from having sex by the local authorities, but not being banned by a law.
“You’re drawing a link between the incident with children and the subsequent decision that just isn’t in the case.”
It is very significant, how can you not see! Alan cannot understand that sex is only legal between adults, hence he keeps involving kids by behaving inappropriately in front of them. His lack of understanding is cemented in the fact that he has never been charged for any of those acts, whereas someone who was deemed capable of understanding their significance would have been.
“If you are trying to argue that ther is no penal notice attached and/or no instant consequences for Alan, that may be so…”
Exactly, so what’s your point – other than make out there is discrimination on the grounds of his disability alone when there isn’t?!
“but in order to exercise its preventative role, the LA would take steps that would have the effect of restricting Alan’s freedom up to and including having him locked up in an institution or chemically coshed.”
Restricted freedom is NOT a ban, it is a measure in place to stop a certain type of behaviour where it is shown to be a danger of one type or another. Where there is no danger, the restrictions are dropped. The measures taken that restrict that freedom, however, differ according to the circumstances. As he has not been castrated, does that not imply that the authorities do not deem it necessary? It would be an incredibly easy route for them to go. This just confirms that the decision made has been thought through very well. Again, the review in 9 months time shows that the complexities of this case have been recognised and that this is PREVENTION and not a BAN!
You need to get a better legal expert.
You don’t seem to know many real facts about people with Downs Syndrome (which has a very wide range of impairments associated with it from some fairly serious stuff to some incredibly mild, with most people with Downs syndrome perfectly capable of understanding about stuff like condoms).
Please stop talking rubbish.
Nice of you to substantiate your arguments with actual facts about Downs, but they I don’t expect much from reactionaries like you. Not to mention, that you didn’t even comment on the judgement, you are obviously just out to yell at people instead of actually discussing the issue at hand. Presumably you are an expert on Downs? I don’t claim to be, but I know a thing or two.
If you must know, My sister had Downs and died at 19, that’s how I know. We didn’t even have the opportunity to think about whether she should be sterilised or not as she never started her periods. She had thyroid problems, cataracts and Hirschprung’s. The only thing she didn’t seem to have was epilepsy, but most of her friends did.
And I don’t know anything? I don’t comment when I know nothing on the subject. Star Wars, not a chance, Downs, yes, very much so.
If you can point out where I said that all Downs people had the same conditions and were affected in the same way, that would be nice. Only you won’t be able to, as I didn’t. Many Downs are NOT sterilised because they don’t need to be, most are infertile (that was Helen scaremongering, as usual). It is only in extreme circumstances that this option has been taken (I only know of one, and if you think that was any easy decision for her parents or the social workers and judges to make, then you have no understanding of what has to be taken into account).
Now think twice before you start slinging mud just to get your rocks off!
Am I the only one getting sick and tired of “mmmmm” (or however many m’s there are) trolling these threads making random attacks on Helen and other trans women (and even me occassionally) — usually beginning with how some woman’s comment is “hysterical” or “paranoid” …. Getting really sick and tired of discussions being waylaid in this way.
It’s far more complicated than the headlines. I read the whole judgement yesterday (link below) and there are complex issues around vulnerability and consent. The judgement is an interim ruling giving the man time to be given sex education …so he is in a position where he can understand the nature of consent. I don’t believe that on reading the whole judgement that it is homophobic. The man involved, ‘Alan’, appears also to have been sexually inappropriate in front of children on occasion. Not because he is a sexual predator, but because his capacity for understanding sexual relationships is not at the level where he understands what consent is or not. The judge has instructed the local authority to provide him with a programme of sex education to help him be able to enjoy consensual adult sexuality (gay or straight) and will be sitting again in 10 months time. ‘Alan’ is reported to be settled and happy right now too. The ruling is well worth a full read.
Yawn, someone who doesn’t like someone else’s points throws petty-minded insults as a means to get attention for herself. You make greatly offensive – not to mention baseless- comments about me being anti-trans and anti-women expect me to just accept that? Up yours. It’s not only childish and regressive for democracy, it just makes people who are not LGBT think that you are precious, weak-minded, sniping and bitchy. But then, that is what I also think as that’s how you portray yourself.
More disturbingly, you’ve got it into your head that the word ‘hysterical’ only applies to women. That’s YOR assumption, no-one else’s. Assigning specific adjectives to specific gender? That is positively prehistoric and you ought to be ashamed of yourself. I think Helen is hysterical and paranoid because that’s how she comes across with her continual self-victimising and almost unique ability to find discrimination where there isn’t a scrap of it. And I’ve said it about a lot of men too, but of course, you’ve conveniently ignored that as it sits your argument on its backside. I defend Helen’s right to equality as a trans as much as anyone else’s on here. But that doesn’t mean she is any more protected from having her views criticised than anyone else.
And who are all these trans women I have apparently ‘attacked’? I have disagreed with Jane (who I think is trans, but I can’t be sure) for her views on this particular subject. Where have I attacked her for being trans? Or, do you think as trans people, you should be exempt from having your views contradicted? People like you can make a career out of being a victim, but it only washes with those of the same mentality – fortunately very few. Regardless of whether I disagree with Jane’s opinions, I would assume she is of sound mind enough to realise it is her view, not biology I am questioning. And she has every right to question my points too – which she does. That;s democracy. Don’t like it? Get lost!
People like you don’t believe in equality for all, you just like to abuse your minority status to attract attention. On that basis, you should butt out of anything related to it. You are a bigot of the highest order.
PS YOU are the one who has waylaid the discussion – in your rant at me, you failed to even comment on the judgement. Like I said, debate properly instead of making false accusations. So, stop waylaying the rest of us or get lost.
Exactly, excellent point – someone who has actually read the judgement! Could you try getting the rest on here to see that this case is very complex and the ramifications of this man’s lack of understanding about sex and the behaviour he exhibits have caused normal human rights to be restricted?
Oh, I can just hear the scoffing of Dr. Hans-Christian Raabe and Melanie Phillips. You can bet had this been an heterosexual with a similar IQ, this wouldn’t be a story. This smacks of bias against “homosexual” sex. What next, mandatory sterilisation for every woman having more than x number of children like they do in China? I have a huge problem with this court decision.
Yawn, another hysterical reaction. Read the judgement and you will see that his ability to have heterosexual intercourse was also discussed. The reason you have such a problem with it is a) you have a problem with everything, b) you haven’t read the case and c) you have never been involved with people where such decisions have been made. If you had, you wouldn’t be acting so hysterically.
This isn’t about being gay. Get over it and stop finding bias and prejudice where there isn’t any. It does our cause great damage to cry wolf.
Poor fella. How horrible to be banned from having sex when you’re 41. Oh wait a minute, that’s what the government used to do to all of us on here.
“Yawn, someone who doesn’t like someone else’s points throws petty-minded insults as a means to get attention for herself.”
Why do you always describe yourself when you’re trying to “get attention for” yourself?
What a joke
Interesting point, especially when your name describes your comments, arf. Two can play at that game, especially when it’s the lamest game in the world (your choice to play, not mine). By making the comment about ‘what they used to do to us’, you are trying to turn the discussion away from disability to being gay, i.e. back to YOU. Anyway you can get attention for youself, eh. Sorry, it’s not all about you, sometimes it’s about people with disabilities who, let’s face it, often have a rougher time than we do. Not that you would have noticed.
You need to check the dictionary to see whay ‘hypocrite’ means. Then, maybe, you can change your login name to that, so it’s reflective of who you are.
Don’t call us, we’ll call you.
So does everyone with an IQ of 48 get barred from sexual activity?
If it’s only the IQ 48 gays who get the ban, then its homophobia..
That’s my simple take on it~
Would the ruling have been the same had the relationship been hetero? Almost certainly.
So I really can’t see this as a gay issue. If advocates for the mentally disabled can raise a ruckus if they like, but I won’t be turning up in support.
In fact, I’d would hate for society at large to assume LGBT people favor sexual contact with the mentally disabled– that’s the kind of sex crazed stereotype we’ve had to fight for too long.
Have to say that the rancor on both sides in these comments is quite disheartening. Can’t we disagree without getting so angry with one another?
@ Sam Maloney: “In fact, I’d would hate for society at large to assume LGBT people favor sexual contact with the mentally disabled– that’s the kind of sex crazed stereotype we’ve had to fight for too long.”
I think part of the problem is the Council and court’s seeming discomfort with the fact that the disabled man may himself be gay. No I don’t believe that if he were in a relationship with a woman his own age that this would have become an issue (though I can see how if he were a woman, they could still have taken on the attitude of custodians and acting in her best interests — yes, gender does play a role here, as does sexual orientation).
I agree with most if not all that Jane Fae has brought up above — particulary the issue of the powers-that-be choosing to control rather than help. I find the precedent this sets very disturbing and the implications could be farther reachign than this one case, particularly for other disabled LGBT people.
So now you want to discuss the issue and not waylay us, good:
“I think part of the problem is the Council and court’s seeming discomfort with the fact that the disabled man may himself be gay.”
How is this the case? Can you find somewhere in the judgement that implies this? It would seem to be just YOUR unsubstantiated opinion because that is what YOU want to believe is the case. Therefore your grounds for accusing the Council and the COP are nul and void.
“No I don’t believe that if he were in a relationship with a woman his own age that this would have become an issue”.
Ditto. But again, what is your proof for this? And, no, your ‘opinion’ does not count as proof.
If you had bothered to read the judgement, you would have noticed the following:
“He had, and has, a vigorous sex drive. This has led to sexual relations with persons of both genders, although it is not suggested that Alan has ever had heterosexual coitus. ”
Investigations into his sexual behaviour have been thorough, as you can see. Not only this, but the authorities have the power to prevent him having sex with ANYONE, not just men. It is therefore NOT to do with him being gay – especially as he has had sexual relations with both genders, though not full intercourse with a female.
“He had no understanding at all of heterosexual coitus”
An invetsigation into this was obvoously thoroughly carried out.
“It was accepted on Alan’s behalf by Mr Sachdeva that as regards heterosexual penetrative vaginal sex Alan fails all three criteria.”
So, we see a number of people have been involved in this.
“As regards homosexual anal and oral sex, he failed on the second criterion. Mr Sachdeva did not press me to find that Alan had capacity to consent to, and to engage in, homosexual (or for that matter heterosexual) sexual activity falling short of anal or oral sex, and I am not prepared to do so given the impossible management problems that will arise were I to do so”
There, do you need any more information that this is about him having sex with anyone, NOT just with men?
I’m afraid your ‘opinion’ does not count as ‘proof’ or even evidence for that matter. You seriously need to look at the detail of the case.
From what you say, I don’t think you have any interest in the welfare of LGBT people with disabilities at all, only your own agenda to pick a fight where there isn’t one on the basis that this is essential what gives you a kick in life. Even when clear evidence is sat staring you in the face, you still insist on implying homophobia is what has led to this ruling. And that is worrying.
“So does everyone with an IQ of 48 get barred from sexual activity?
That’s my simple take on it~”
Yet another person who hasn’t read the case and without a grasp on the basics of law!
You have made two fatal errors:
1) This is nothing to do with being gay – it’s about sexual relations with ANYONE. Had you read the case, you would know that.
2) People with an IQ of 48 are NOT automatically prevented from having sex and it is foolish of you to imply that. It is the totality of the individual’s ability to understand the action he/she is undertaking, the associated health risks and the impact on others. A number of criteria have to be met, not to mention monitoring and assessment by psychologists, behavioural therapists and guardians, before any deicison can be made by the COP.
Whilst I agree with your point, this debate is heated because it is someone’s welfare that is at stake – not to mention their human rights. If I were involved in the welfare of this man and some do-gooding, self-proclaiming yet ill-informed champion of human rights like Helen or SuburbanBi came along and started trying to reverse the judgement of this case, I would be very vociferous.
None of those disagreeing on here have actually pointed to any excerpts from the case to justfy their points. Doesn’t that tell you something about them?
This is disability discrimination of the highest order. Everyone has the right to a loving relationship and even meaningless intercourse if they prefer. No matter what their IQ is.
Where are these so called social workers when we hear about religious genital mutilation, arranged marriages and honor killings? They are worried about causing offense to religion and race but disability and sexuality, as always are fair game.
Your login name says it all. Sigh, I’ll explain it to you as well:
“This is disability discrimination of the highest order. Everyone has the right to a loving relationship and even meaningless intercourse if they prefer. No matter what their IQ is.”
Not if they meet the three criteria: a) they do not undertand the mechanics of the act, b) there are associated health risks and c) there is a risk of pregnancy. Even those alone are too simplistic to make a full judgement, but where evidence substantially supports all three, then there is a case for preventing sexual intercourse.
You are also conflating SEX with a LOVING RELATIONSHIP. The court has NOT denied this man the opportunity to fall in love and have a relationship, although, presumably because of the sexual issues, a distance has been nurtured between him and his partner.
“Where are these so called social workers when we hear about religious genital mutilation, arranged marriages and honor killings?”
Probably doing their job like everyone else – you know, social workers aren’t Jordan, flashing their every detail to the world via a series of scandal rags. Most of all, lots of these cases, like this one, are incredibly sensitive. Only when it reaches court/legal intervention level is any information released to the public. You don’t hear about them because either you don’t know anyone involved in those cases or the media hasn’t picked it up. Honour killings? Oh, because we don’t hear about that on an almost weekly basis, then? You should try reading the news for once.
“They are worried about causing offense to religion and race but disability and sexuality, as always are fair game.”
That self-pitying, self-indulgent, moronic statement does not even merit a response.
If you don’t understand what’s going on, look it up, educated yourself and then come back and join the discussion. Your cries of discrimination when you are clearly not able to understand the whole situation are ill-placed and irritating.
There are many, many young men with learning difficulties living on the streets and surviving as rent boys. I don’t see any councils policing their customers. Are we all going to have an IQ test now before we are “allowed” to have sex? How many people have unprotected sex every day despite knowing the risks, spreading infection and causing unwanted pregnancies? I have a gut feeling that this guy is being made a scapegoat.
“There are many, many young men with learning difficulties living on the streets and surviving as rent boys. I don’t see any councils policing their customers.”
Have you raised the issue? Apparently you seem to know of all these rent boys…..Even then, is their IQ too low to have even the vaguest understanding of what sex is? If not, then the law cannot intervene in their right to a private life, hence you’re argument that this ‘scapegoat’ case will impact upon us all has no foundation.
“Are we all going to have an IQ test now before we are “allowed” to have sex?”
Stop being melodramatic, you know full well this case is of the most rare and extreme variety. Unless you think YOU need a test of course.
“How many people have unprotected sex every day despite knowing the risks, spreading infection and causing unwanted pregnancies?
Millions, I should imagine. But they are not of an IQ that is so low they are unable to understand what they are doing. If they transmit an infection or get pregnant, they have to face the conseuquence, possibly legal. If the IQ is shown to be too low to understand the actions and health risks, you do not face any legal punishment for your actions. That’s as fair as it can get.
“I have a gut feeling that this guy is being made a scapegoat.”
Scapegoat for what? Please say what you mean. Do you think he is the first to have faced such a prevention order? Or will be the last? This isn’t a precedent-setting case. More to the point it took place at the COP, where only a few cases are held per year. Again, you’re being overdramatic if you think that this ruling will have any impact on you – who is fully able to type a sentence. It won’t even have any effect on any other people with disabilities – except those who fulfil the same criteria as this man.
I agree with, mmmmmmmmm (yes, really, mmmmmmmm :D ). I work with adults with severe learning difficulties and from the information we know I can’t see any evidence that this judgement was homophobic. It’s quite right that Alan is given support and education, and if that means exercising a level of control/supervision over his relationships than I can’t see the problem. It’s not a ban, it’s a delay – for his benefit.
Wonderful to see you here and making yet another comment rich in rational thought, consideration of the evidence and boundless common sense. I am bemused by anyone who has managed to see homophobia – even unintentionally – in this decision. It is these people who try to scare everyone with exaggerations and misinterpretations (often deliberate to suit personal agendas). Just imagine if those people were actually involved in the case. Gawd ‘elp us!
Mind you, the Pink News headline said it all by deliberatley focusing on this man’s ‘male partner’ when it wasn’t actually relevant. This detail wasn’t significant, yet by emphasising it, it would imply homophobia was involved (to the short-sighted at least). Not to mention this ‘homophobia’ had been assumed by nothing more than a faceless blogger – not an MP, Minister, health professional, juror or family member involved in the case – just some nameless internet ‘commentator’. Cheap, sloppy journalism – and, worryingly, identical tactics to The Daily Mail: skew the truth, omit facts, emphasis obscure or unrelated details and sprinkle in adjectives of size to draw in your readership. I only read Pink News because there are no other practical alternatives – it’s concise and easy to access. It’s not for the quality of the writing, most of that I take with a pinch of salt.
For some though, this is apparently a Bible of some sort!
“IQ too low to have even the vaguest understanding of what sex is? ”
The Mental Capacity Act is a test of Mental Capacity – not IQ. They are not the same thing. You can have a high IQ and still have a low mental capacity.
“Stop being melodramatic, you know full well this case is of the most rare and extreme variety”
- and how would Felix know that – or come to that how would you? The court handles 30,000 cases a year – only half a dozen are published. So your evidence that none of the other 29,994 cases are identical to this is precisely what?
“More to the point it took place at the COP, where only a few cases are held per year. ”
Nonsense on stilts! you only get to hear about half a dozen cases a year – the rest are held behind closed doors every day of the week.
“you’re being overdramatic if you think that this ruling will have any impact on you – who is fully able to type a sentence.”
Priceless stereotyping – so now none of the 30,000 people for whom decisions are made every week by the Court of Protection in secret can type a sentence can they? You really don’t have a clue what you are talking about. That is a deeply unfashionable attitude to take if you really believe that you can tell whether someone has the specific loss of mental capacity relevance to the court by their ability to type a sentence, or perhaps even by appearance?
I’d be really keen to take legal advice from someone called Anna Raccoon too.
Nathan hit it on the head – if Alan does not have the capacity to consent to sex, then he cannot consent to it.
And you’re an expert on this because?
30,000 cases a year is not actually many (source of the figures please?). What Felix has got to do with it, I’m not quite sure. All of us with any nouse on here can understand that this is a rare case. Can’t you? And, NO, there aren’t 30,000 cases on banning intercourse alone every year!.
Most of these cases are held behind closed doors or not reported. Why? Because they are so bloody sensitive and those who befall the Mental Capacity Act are in no position to publicly defend themselves. If there is a protest at the ruling, then it will be more likely to make it out to the media.
What exactly was your point in all of this? I mean, were you trying to tell me that you agreed with the ruling? Disagreed with it? What you felt were the weaknesses or strengths? Didn’t see any of that, just saw a bunch of spiteful comments scribbled down just for the sake of attackig someone. If you want to correct anything I have written, fine, but just spitting feathers without really saying anything has just made me dismiss your remarks.
To be honest, I get the impression you had a quick flick through wikipedia and google and suddenly became an ‘expert’, like a lot of people do on here.
“30,000 cases a year is not actually many (source of the figures please?). ”
Public Guardianship Annual Report.
“All of us with any nouse on here can understand that this is a rare case.”
aha! So ‘all of you’ possess such superior intelligence, or ‘nouse’ as you put it, that you can see behind the secret doors of the court and ascertain with absolute certainty that this is a rare case? Remarkable. The only rare thing about it is that it was released into the public domain.
“And, NO, there aren’t 30,000 cases on banning intercourse alone every year!.”
You simply don’t know whether or how many of the 30,000 cases are regarding banning of intercourse or anything else. Only half a dozen cases are published. So your comment is nonsense and mere supposition. I didn’t say there were 30,000 case banning intercourse, I merely said that there could be for all you know.
No need to resort to Wikipedia or Google. I work for the court, so wouldn’t dream of commenting on their decisions, I would dream of commenting on your ill informed and bad tempered comment to Felix as to whether an ability to type had any relevance to mental capacity.
Myles, the judge said he did have capacity to consent, that’s rather the point. Just that he didn’t understand the health risks of sex. But then, how many really do?
And if mmmmmmm Or anyone else gets depressed, throws caution to the wind and loses the ability or desire to be discerning when having sex, will he lose his sex licence until he’s no longer a danger to himself and others?
Pink News has proven itself to be the self-certified rabble rouser of the extremist gay militant lobby bar none. Its propensity to incite hysteria among its lunatic fringe over the most trivial and alleged “homophobic” stories is starting to get out of hand. The Pink once had my utmost respect in simply publishing news of a gay slant but now seems intent on whipping up a frenzy of venom and bile at every opportunity. It is fast losing all credibility and respect. Nuff said.
I’m not sure why you’re commenting if you daren’t discuss the case. This thread is about the case and the ethics around it. It would seem you are only here to assert your ego and score petty points on obscure details. Just for the sake of it.
Not that I can be sure you work for the court – how on earth would I know – but your insistence that you are an ‘expert’ should presumably have urged you to correct the misunderstandings of EVERYONE. Your sole aim seems to be to personally defend Felix. And only him – do you have a particular interest in him? Yet you haven’t corrected him on the errors he’s made – you know, conflating IQ with the Mental Capacity Act. So why single me out? I think you feel threatened in some bizarre way, you wouldn’t be so vociferous and spiteful if you weren’t.
Unless you’re going to add something useful to the debate, then don’t bother. You’re the only one claiming to be an ‘expert’ on here, but as yet there’s not much to show for that claim…..
I would have thought the ruling was mainly to protect the man himself from being abused.
You’re being too simplistic. He may have had the capacity to give consent (i.e. he can say yes or no), but not with an adequate understanding of the health risks or even the mechanics (heterosexual sex – he’s had sexual relations of sorts with women, but didn’t understand heterosexual coitus). But on that basis, coupled with all the other observations made prior to the judgement, do you really think he is in a position to have sex with someone else without it being of detriment to his health or welfare?
I read the council ruling, this dude doesn’t even know how to put on a condom properly.
He’s banned because he doesn’t understand the risks of sex.
Gosh…don’t people imagine stuff and wander off the point. This judgment is magnificent…in much the same way you could say a judgment on whether teaching schoolkids the mechanics of gay sex was indoctrination or simple factual teaching.
Yep. Bet judges could pontificate for hours on a topic like that and…if they decided it was indoctrination, you’d all be going “Yay! judges!” No?
Or maybe you’d take one step back and say: why the hell is the question even being asked?
What is discrimination? It is imposing conditions on one section of a population that you don’t impose on another section which are not justified in terms of the praxis of the acts involved.
Had the judge wanted to draw attention to the possibility of Alan being abused…or of his child-fancying propensities…or any other aspect of his behaviour, i am sure he would have. But he didn’t.
He brought the issue down to three simple tests, kicked two into touch, and said that Alan failed the third.
Brilliant. Now we have an absolute rule by which we can establish whether consent is present when two adults wish to indulge in rumpy-pumpy. So let’s go down to our nearest bar and ask the clientele whether they understand the health implications of anal shagging.
Tell you what: let’s make it simple and save the expense of an expert. Let’s reduce it to six simple questions and anyone who doesn’t get 4 or more right is barred from having anal sex. Or, if it will please MMMMM…we’ll authorise the local council to restrain them from having it.
Sorted. No discrimination whatsoever.
So….where’s the applause? Are some of you thinking not all your mates would pass?
Are some of you thinking that wouldn’t be fair? So its not fair to impose a test on ordinary stout-hearted (gay) men, but it is fair to impose that test on a guy with a disability.
Now, how were we defining discrimination in the first place?
Much like the original article, that last comment of yours was absolute drivel, full of the usual scaremongering and unfounded calls of prejudice, with a total disregard of the details outlined in the judgement. You are determined to ‘prove’ that the world is out to condemn everyone just for the sake of condemning. But failing miserably to those of us who have read the case and read the views of others on here. We are a community that is easily and quickly stereotyped, yet you have made sure that the label of being hysterical and paranoid sticks to our name through this awful article. Thanks an effing bunch.
Maybe you should reconsider what freedom is. People are free to do whatever they want without it being questioned. Except where their behaviour a) it impacts on others and b) where it impacts on themselves in a way that is dangerous to their own health and well-being. A simple presentation of evidence normally sorts the wheat from the chaff on such matters. Then a case like this comes along and a difficult decision has to be made. Do we deny a fundemental, protected freedom to someone who is not in a position to defend himself against the ruling because it is a danger to his health and well-being? Or do we just let him get on and endanger his health and well-being because it is not our place to limit the freedom of others regardless of the dangers? That is essentially the choice the judges have had to make. Protecting the individual from himself, wherever possible, is paramount. And that, as far as this case is concerned, has been considered right by not only the judges, but the overwhelming majority on here. Those on the thread who disagreed were the ones who had neither read the case nor expressed an interest in actually understanding what went into that decision being made. Just panic-merchants and purveyors of mischief. But that is why they will never be involved in such cases personally, they aren’t fit to make such decisions as they refuse to inform themselves before they speak. It’s a kind of natural selection.
Your article was of the low grade ilk one expects from the Daily Mail or The Sun. Outlandish statements proclaiming homophobia based on some obscure internet blogger’s ‘opinion’, a skewing of events, total disregard for the facts of the case and an unnecessary focus on a part of the case that was not relevant – his purported sexuality (we still don’t know if he’s actually gay, bi or anything – he couldn’t understand the mechanics of heterosexual sex, but that doesn’t imply that he is not attracted to women as well as men). You have invented discrimination when it was obvious to all it was not there.It is an insult to all those involved in the case who must have waded through some pretty uncomfortable territory, yet still managed to make the fairest decision possible.
Sloppy, unprofessional journalism that would be discredited by any of your contemporaries working for established media sources.
You have brought negative attention to us yet again Pink News and you, Jane Fae, should perhaps return to journalism school – if you ever went there in the first place!
So if he hadn’t understood the concept of getting a female pregant or catching a STI from a woman he wouldn’t have been allowed to have sex….it doesn’t on the face of it appear to be homophobic since the same rules are applied whether it was for straight or gay sex…..Don’t know enough about the “denial of the rights of disabled people”…I hope he finally gets taught about STIs etc and gets to understand them…
In a ruling described as “homophobic” and “a denial of the rights of disabled people”, — who actually described it as this? was it the blogger?
This judgment looks carefully considered and the judge himself said it was difficult to reach.
The judge also recognised that this was such a difficult issue that he might have reached the wrong answer by granting permission to appeal his own judgment.
Having read through the judgment, which really does appear to be carefully balanced, there is no trace of homophobia anywhere. Neither is there any trace of discrimination. If the male has insufficient capacity to be considered an adult or to have sufficiently mature reasoning abilities, then surely the state has an obligation to look after him for his own protection.
I can understand why they stopped him. At the same time, if a bunch of people decided I had a low IQ and therefore didn’t understand sex and watched me all the time so I couldn’t have it – then it might be a different story. It’s a difficult one – who is to say who does and does not have the right to have sex and to what criteria we should decide that upon.
Rev C wrote:
“I read the council ruling, this dude doesn’t even know how to put on a condom properly.
He’s banned because he doesn’t understand the risks of sex.”
Hey, every guy sometimes gets it on backward. (we kinda lose focus when we’re excited) There is no indication that he was ever given the opportunity to learn.
Read the decision again:
“A person is not to be treated as unable to make a decision unless all practicable steps to help him to do so have been taken without success.”
“I am not satisfied that sufficient practical steps have yet been taken to see if Alan can have sex, ….”
You seem to have made the same mistaken assumptions as his present caregivers.
Jane, I’ve been very interested to read your comments but, with respect, I still don’t see this case as discrimination.
You said: “So its not fair to impose a test on ordinary stout-hearted (gay) men, but it is fair to impose that test on a guy with a disability.”
I don’t see the relevance of that comment really. Yes, of course, there are numerous people who need better sex education or a more responsible attitude, but that’s a separate matter. People who are incapable of independent living because of a learning disability are in the care of the authorities. Obviously, each person MUST be considered on a case to case basis, as they are all different, but it’s not at all uncommon for people with learning difficulties that require care to have ‘restrictions’ placed upon them. It’s a difficult balance of their rights and their responsibilities. The people I work with are, I’d guess FAR more disabled than Alan, but even then the aim is to give them as much freedom as possible within the bounds of safety and our duty of care to them.
When I saw the headline of this article I thought the homophobia would be obvious, but I couldn’t see any reading it. I’m not convinced that Alan was treated differently simply because he was gay.
I do have to wonder if the relationship this man had was with a woman, instead of a man, would this have even gone to court?
If it would even be questioned. It seems that it is only being questioned because he is deemed unable to grasp the idea of sex therefore being with a man must be wrong.
I do think this judgement is more on Christian morals than the basic human rights of the man in question. Something you’d expect in a police state.
I read this on, Saturday I think, in another paper. Not one to be first with the news eh PinkNews.
the difficulty here is around the question of direct vs. indirect discrimination. People “get” the former fairly easily – but the latter seems to elude them.
The first is just treating someone worse because of some protected characteristic they have. No gays. No women. That’s obvious.
The latter is about putting in place conditions that one group can meet more easily than another. No-one under 6′.
In that case, unless the job absolutely required that height, it would be indirect discrimination against women.
An employer might argue that, so long as an individual met the height requirement, they’d all be treated the same: ergo, no discrimination. But that doesn’t undo the fact that the selection process was discriminatory in the first place.
Therefore, on a simple reading of this case, it ain’t discriminatory because the judge would sort of apply the same condition to everyone who came before his court. Oh. But wait a minute: not everyone comes before his court. In fact, mostly Alan seems to be in the sights right now.
So i end up asking three questions:
1. is applying this condition to a disabled man whilst not doing the same to non-disabled looks pretty discriminatory to me.
2. why the obsession with sex/the sexual act? There are dozens of things an individual can do where a knowledge of health principles is key. Yet, as so often, their focus is sex.
3. if there is homophobic discrimination – and i don’t know that: am only repeating quotes passed back by others who have looked at this case – it is operating at the outset. A general ickiness about the situation and a readiness to take action in respect of two men having sex which would not be there if it were a man and a woman.
No: i don’t KNOW that was the case at all…but i re-iterate: do people really think that there would have been so much focus on Alan’s ability to consent if he were with a woman?
blow away all the fluff that people commenting on here have raised. the judge was not concerned at all in his final decision with the inappropriate child behavious – or if he was, he did not bring it into the testing.
This case is, outwardly, purely and simply about Alan’s welfare: and i have a sneaky suspicion that the LA would NOT have brought it if he’d been shagging a woman. That’s the reason for the possible homophobia – not the content of the judge’s guidelines.
if everyone was banned from having sex/making love due to stupidity then there would be millions of bans, this seems very stupid and nasty to me and reading the report hasn’t convinced me that it’s fair,
I am forever surprised by the English – and particularly the left. The more I look, the more it looks like everyone has swallowed the atomistic individualism of Margaret Thatcher.
Reading the judgment, the individual has no concept of what sex is or what the consequences are of the same. There is reference in the judgment to two potential sexual assaults because he did not appreciate what he was doing.
Insofar as this person operates under a disability and he is treated differently this does not necessarily appear to be discriminatory.
First, it is arguable if he is receiving less favourable treatment. Any person who had a lack of capacity or had the intellectual age of a child would require differential treatment for their own protection. If the court’s ruling that he should be prevented from having sex is for his own protection then it is an open question as to whether the treatment is less favourable.
If, however, the treatment is less favourable, it would seem that the differential treatment would be justified on the grounds of protection to this individual and to others.
Here is a person who, according to the judgment who is unable to understand his actions and who has the cognition of a child. That is not to say that he is “stupid” which is an intellectual state. It is a question of his maturity which is retarded.
Where a person is unable to look after themselves, surely it is the duty of the state to step in and protect them rather than leaving them to the mercy of a false sense of “autonomy”. Otherwise, we would all be living in a system of le capitalisme sauvage where unrealistic notions of self-sufficiency and individuality would leave people to the mercy of their unfortunate inheritance.
I was horrified originally but after reading everything it is neither homophobic or disablist, I actually think they have his best interests at heart.
If you believe he shouldn’t be prevented from having sex do you also believe he shouldn’t be prevented from having sex with children or people who do not consent? He can’t make a distinction between right and wrong, age range or consent, eventually he may end up raping a child without realising he’s doing anything wrong or catch a serious sexual disease because he does not understand what condoms do.
Has anyone ever actually looked after a person with an IQ as low as his? He probably doesn’t even know what sex is.
It’s high time you read the decision. It’s only ONE page.
Your 3 questions are directly answered there.
Jane, I appreciate your reply and your three questions because they clarify your views.
1) Yes, TECHICALLY the mentally disabled are discriminated against in a number of aspects of their lives, but to me ‘discrimination’ is the wrong word. (I’m talking generally now, please note)
You seem to be suggesting that we should just stand back and let them get on with their lives, but I think you’re horribly wrong to think that if that IS what your suggesting (apologies for misunderstand if you’re not). We have a duty of care to them, and standing back is sometimes not only not right, but potentially harmful.
2) I don’t believe there’s an “obsession with the sex act” in caring for mentally disabled people. You mention that being healthy encompasses more than sexual relationships and I wholly agree but all those other areas are covered too. I’ve never seen any evidence that there’s an obsession with sex.
3) You suggest that there may have been homophobic discrimination at the outset – ie an “ickiness” because sexual relationships in Alan’s case included those with men – but, while I acknowledge that there’s no shortage of homophobia in the UK, I haven’t seen any evidence that that was the case in here.
I read the judgement as an OVERALL one about Alan’s capacity to understand sexual relationships in the broadest sense. I also read it as relating to both straight and gay relationships. So, yes, from the evidence I’ve seen, I DO believe that the ‘restrictions’ put on Alan would apply equally to all relationships – that is, he’s being prevented from having sex with anyone of any gender until such point that he’s judged capable of having sufficient understanding to give informed consent.
If you’re implying that the case would never have come to court if Alan’s relationship had been with a woman, well, we can never know for sure, but I’d guess with my very limited knowledge that it would have. The issue seems to be that Alan lacks the mental capacity to give informed consent for sexual acts and has a “vigorous sex drive” that has led to him indulging in inappropriate behaviour. So he’s being prevented from having sex with another person (male OR female, is how I read it) until he can show that he can consent and has sufficient understanding. I see this not as a punishment for Alan, but as a protection – and, yes, I think they would have done the same if, to use your words, Alan had been “shagging a woman”. I think the issue here wasn’t the gender of the person he had sex with, but his “vigorous sex drive” and his lack of understanding of sex – ie consent and health issues.
Mint response, well-argued and not a cross word in sight. Inspiring, very inspiring.
ok the rights of this disabled man and the responsability by the council has been discussed…but what about the male companion of this person? was it consensual sex or not? what are the responsabilities of this other guy presumably not disabled!?
Having had a quick skim through the comments and read the initial posts by mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm and skipped the rest, it seems one point is being missed when the discussion winds back to the disabled guy and his interaction with children. The guy lives in sheltered accomodation so at no point in time would he be able to have sex with children. And if he did have sex with his adult friend it would be in a situation where other adults were around to ensure everything was ok.
As to whether Alan understood the issues around sex and children, bear in mind he is acting like a young boy not an adult in which you conceive some pedophillic tendencies.
What this case does show is that the LA is more keen on banning/prevention than actually doing something positive for the guy. Something that the judge told the LA to do – educate the guy, help him understand the issues. It should be kept simple and to the point. If he like anal sex and doesn’t have much contact with females, then no need to teach him about making babies.
“The guy lives in sheltered accomodation so at no point in time would he be able to have sex with children. And if he did have sex with his adult friend it would be in a situation where other adults were around to ensure everything was ok.”
He is assisted by someone at all times and could end up alone in the company of childre, such as in a park, sports centre or elsewhere. Not to mention, he may have family and friends who have children. There are obviously opportunities for this to happen.
The same goes for him being surrounded by people when his adult friend is present. Is this always the case? And how does one stop him from meeting other adults when out alone or in the care of people not from the care home?
He’s prevented from having sex, but that doesn’t mean his entire life is governed 24 hours a day by the presence of a carer.
“As to whether Alan understood the issues around sex and children, bear in mind he is acting like a young boy not an adult in which you conceive some pedophillic tendencies.”
It doesn’t matter, he’s physically capable of going through with the act, the same as any other fully developed adult. I wouldn’t label him a paedophile personally, that implies too much wilful intent, but a risk to children of a different kind.
“What this case does show is that the LA is more keen on banning/prevention than actually doing something positive for the guy. Something that the judge told the LA to do – educate the guy, help him understand the issues. It should be kept simple and to the point.”
But that’s what the LA is doing – the case has come in, recommendations for a programme of education have been proposed and a review date is set for 9 months time. Only then can the results of the education programme be assessed. For the interim period, a temporary prevention order has been made whilst the problem is addressed. That’s standard for many problems.
“If he like anal sex and doesn’t have much contact with females, then no need to teach him about making babies.”
An assessment was needed to see if he understood the mechanics of heterosexual intercourse – and presumably fertilisation – as he has had non-penetrative ‘sexual relations’ with females. Clearly he doesn’t, but it needed to be shown for the purposes of the case. He can still masturbate over one, which is actually quite an important consideration to make.
correction to previous post, it should read:
“He is NOT necesarily assisted by someone at all times and could end up alone in the company of children, such as in a park, sports centre or elsewhere.”
@m “He is NOT necesarily assisted by someone at all times and could end up alone in the company of children, such as in a park, sports centre or elsewhere.”
So how does banning/preventing him stop that from happening unless he is locked up 24/7?
As I say education is the main thing that should be carried out, not banning or prevention – which were we seem to agree. But this is not what the LA seemed to be aiming for initially as they brought the case to stop Alan from having sex. If they really wanted to educate him then there was no need to go to court.
I don’t see his actions regarding the children as paedophilia either. I only see them as an illustration of inappropriate sexual behaviour.
As for ‘Kieron’, yes I wondered about him too. I didn’t quite get if the implication was that he was taking advantage of Alan in some way. We know nothing about him or his mental capacity. Nor do we know what concerns the authority had to initiate this case. Nor – I’ve just thought – do we know what kind of people Alan is living with now, which may also inform the circumstances of his daily life and the temporary ban on sex with other people.
The fact that there’s to be a review is crucial. That’s a fair and sensible thing to do so I don’t see any problem.
I concur. It also just struck me, now that you mention the others living in the care home, whether the transmission of STIs specifically is a concern. Not wanting to speculate, but perhaps Alan was contracting/transmitting infections regularly. Of course, there is no basis for this hypothesis, other than the amount of focus placed on his safety and ability to consent. You may be right in posturing that he may have been exploited by others in or outside the home stemming from his inability to consent.
In any case, I still think this judgement seems fair, especially with the bullwark of a review.
“So how does banning/preventing him stop that from happening unless he is locked up 24/7?”
Interesting point. That remains privvy only to those who were involved in the case. It could depend on when and where the sexual activity is taking place. Or how obediant he is when told what he must or must not do.
“As I say education is the main thing that should be carried out, not banning or prevention – which were we seem to agree.”
Yes and no. Education, definitely, but what if he cannot absorb any of that education? What then? The prevention and regular reviews must continue whilst new approaches are tried. Another option would be to move him to a care home where he is more isolated or monitored – but that would be much more devastating to his overall well-being.
“But this is not what the LA seemed to be aiming for initially as they brought the case to stop Alan from having sex. If they really wanted to educate him then there was no need to go to court”
It doesn’t stipulate the specific grounds for recommending it to the court. Presumably other methods had been exhausted or maybe a court ruling was required to access funding for a particular programmee. Again, there is little to go on.
In any case, I still believe the right judgement has been made, regardless of the grounds that brought it there in the first place.
Wot next an IQ test before shagging ? !
Use your er head – Nathan !
capacity is surely not a thing set in stone..in fact the Mental Health Act says that our capacity to do various things changes over time and can be affected by drugs/drink etc…are we to assume that this ruling would be bought to bear on people engaging in sexual acts when drunk and not practising safe sex…?
It just promotes that kind of eugenic thinking…people with learning disabilities are not children forever and they do become sexual beings with sexual needs and orientations. Most adults would surely say that a healthy intimate relationship with another is key to their mental and emotional well being! I agree with Dennis that it seems a huge infringement on the rights of an individual.
Erm, there is no IQ test, it’s a test of mental capacity to engage in an activity.
On the basis of your point, it should also be illegal to section someone who is a danger to themselves and others because it curbs their freedom. This man is being prevented from having sex because of similar issues, i.e. lacking the mental capacity to do so safely and with full knowledge of what he is doing.
That is why your opinion on this case holds no weight.
Would they have approached ‘perceived health issues’ the same way, if the other sexual partner was a sterile female?
Or is all this about, unprotected anal sex?
Stop stirring, this is to do with sex, not sexual orientation – read the judgement.
It obviously depends on what the health issues are. If it were to do with STIs, the woman being sterile or not is neither here nor there, it’s about infections. It also depends on the behaviour during sex – is he too aggressive? Once he starts, is he unable to physically stop himself, even when the partner asks him to (i.e. does he understand consent?)? The reference to anal sex is because he has engaged in sexual relations of that nature with another man. It doesn’t mean he is being discouraged for the TYPE of sex he is having, it’s just details of the case. It could be significant from the perspective of him being exploited or even physically injured.
I am still amazed that new people are contributing to this thread without a) having read the judgement and b) read the rest of the discussion. Not only that, it is still quite incredible that people are so determined to prove this is a case of homophobia when there is not the slightest whiff of it.
“people with learning disabilities are not children forever and they do become sexual beings with sexual needs and orientations.”
Absolutely, and I repeat the aim is to allow them as much freedom as is possible with the proviso that they don’t harm themselves or others and are able to understand all the issues and give informed consent.
Someone didn’t wake up one day and randomly decide to prevent this man having sex with other adults, there were clearly ongoing concerns and thus this case was brought to a court for a fair judgement – which i think has happened.
I wonder about the competence of the psychiatrist who interviewed Alan. I would have thought that saying that sex could lead to ‘spots’ or ‘measles’ would indicate that Alan knew that about STDs in general if not the specifics. Alan said he would like to kiss the person he had relationships with again, which to me may mean that he would like to resume sexual activity with that person.
People with intellectual disabilities don’t necessarily use the same words as we do to express themselves. They also have often been ‘conditioned to please’ and will say what people want to hear.
What I thought was really irrelevant was the detail that I was unaware what female genitilia looked like. How relevant are female genitilia to gay men.
Having just skimmed the comments and the judgement, I do feel that the guy was being singled out because of having an IQ of 48. If you have worked with people with low IQs, you will know that actually having an IQ of 48 can be quite bright. I know people who are married and who carry on competitive employment with IQs of less than that. Each person is different however.
I also find that the community at large feels a real need to protect the disabled from sexual activity. I wonder how much of that has come into play here.
‘Downs woman’ ‘female downs’ ‘downs mother’
Try a PERSON (a human being) who has Down’s Syndrome. After all we are all people first.
‘a very short lifespan, low IQ and ability to grasp the seriousness of many aspects of daily life – what kind of life will the mother and child have? A very terrifying one probably.’
Not everyone who has Down’s syndrome has a learning disability and even if an individual does have a learning disability it does not mean that the are not able to function as a part of society. Many people who have Down’s Syndrome and people who have a learning disability are equally capable of being parents even if some may need additional support. Both parent and child can have a very happy and fullfilling life which would be made better without the ignorance of people who judge them.
‘The mother will probably only live until about 30 years of age, leaving the child motherless at a very young age.’
Where did you get this information from? The lifespan of an individual with Down’s Syndrome may be shorter than that of the general population but many sources place the avergae life expectancy at around 60 years.
‘Do you think it’s fair we let a Downs woman, who has no real understanding of contraception, get pregnant? Be terrified in pregnancy, because she isn’t able AT ALL to understand what is happening.’
I think you mean a woman with Down’s syndrome and like I stated before, not everyone who has Down’s syndrome is the same. Isn’t able ‘AT ALL’ to understand what is happening? Says who? I’m guessing that is just a statement based purely on your lack of knowledge or awareness of Down’s Syndrome and Mental Capacity issues.
‘Learn to think about others for a change.’
I think perhaps you should take your own advice.
Do you honestly, really, truly think by referring to a Downs woman as a woman with Downs syndrome somehow changes the realities of the condition? If you’d bothered to read the posts you’d have understood that my sister had Downs syndrome, this is not something I am uninformed about. To be honest, that is all I need to even mention.
As for not being able to undesrtand AT ALL, yes, some of these people cannot actually understand what’s going on AT ALL. Hence why SOME of them are sterilised. Not ALL, but SOME. I never said people with Downs syndrome were ALL the same, that is YOUR petty-minded interpretation. Had you bothered to read the entire thread, you would have seen how the discussion on that subject progressed. Do your homework properly before you start making accusations.
So before you start giving me all your politically correct, self-righteous, disingenuous bleeding-heart crap again, perhaps YOU ought to go and figure out a few things.
In a ruling described as “homophobic” and “a denial of the rights of disabled people”,
But who of significance has said this? It’s the first line and it seems to suggest there is somekind of dispute or appeal against the decision…anybody can say anything on a blog or a comment page of PN…..can we have names , orgs that are actually describing this as homophobic and against the rights of disable people…the line suggest it’s the general opinion of experts and I can’t see any expert saying this!
Nathan’s attitude to the disabled is even more antiquated than the COP’s. They do present challenging problems~ but most of these arise because they are emphatically NOT the same as ‘an 8 year old’.
And if Alan could learn as much about sex with another man as he already had, mightn’t it have been worthwhile trying to show him how to use a condom?
Do you think they didn’t show him how to use one? Read the bloody judgement. They did and he had no understanding of what it was used for or how it was deployed!
I am so sick of these inane comments from people who obviously haveb’t read the finer details.
@ mmmmmmmm – Do you think they didn’t show him how to use one? Read the bloody judgement. They did and he had no understanding of what it was used for or how it was deployed!
To quote “Although he knew what a condom was he was not able to put one on properly on a prosthetic penis – he put it on inside out so it could not be rolled down.”
This does not indicate that he was taught to use it, only that he knew what it was and a rough understanding of how to deploy it. If anything it shows that he hasn’t been taught, and if he has then not taught enough. However the judgement doesn’t say how many times he was allowed to try and put the condom on the prosthetic. Nor if he was asked to put it on the prosthetic or if he was just given the condom and left to put it on the most obvious object.
Can anyone confirm whether or not this is the same council (Newcastle) that paid for a heterosexual disabled man to go to Amsterdam to have sex with female prostitiutes? One source is claiming it’s the same one.
I recall the Amsterdam story, but only that one other source has listed that it was this same council that is now denying a disabled man the right to have sex with another man.
If it is the same council, this definitely shows a difference in attitude in relation, not to having sex, but to having straight vs gay sex — which may be where the concern that homophobia is playing a role is coming from. If it is not the same council, the fact that such different decisions can be arrived at under similar circumstances can cause people to pause and ask questions.
The social worker for the straight disabled man was quoted as saying: “Wouldn’t you prefer that we can control this, guide him, educate him, support him to understand the process and ultimately end up satisfying his needs in a secure, licensed place where his happiness and growth as a person is the most important thing?”
I believe all some people here are saying is that the same attitude could have been taken with this 41 yr old man who had and wants to continue his relationship with a male partner — but that the out and out ban on his having sex, due to his not understanding safe sex, seems a crude and insensitive instrument.
Despite reading the entire ruling and dispite the persistent policing of any dissent from that opinion that at least one poster on this thread has insisted upon — those of us who see a problem with this ruling are not speaking from our wayward hysteria but rather an understanding that well-meaning people in councils and learned judges can still get things wrong. They are not imune to, as Jane Fae puts it, the “ickiness” some people still have about same-sex relationships and can feel that one is more risky, potentially abusive and dangerous to a vulnerable person than a straight relationship.
Yes, this is just an opinion, but despite some statements above, it is not an ill-informed one and the people who are pausing to criticise this ruling have genuine concerns and the right to voice them.
“but that the out and out ban on his having sex, due to his not understanding safe sex, seems a crude and insensitive instrument.”
Again, you show your lack of understanding. He has not been BANNED. Those with the responsibility for his care have been afforded the possibility of PREVENTING him from having sex. These are NOT the same thing. A prevention order is not a permanent ban. do I have to keep repeating that? Even then, a total ban on SOME individuals may be necessary, depending on the seriousness of the health (and other) risks stemming from their sexual activity. If you are totally blind, you are not allowed to drive. Are you going to tell me that this is unfair and violates that person’s human rights? All these things depend on circumstances and you have failed to take note of that.
“Despite reading the entire ruling and dispite the persistent policing of any dissent from that opinion that at least one poster on this thread has insisted upon — those of us who see a problem with this ruling are not speaking from our wayward hysteria but rather an understanding that well-meaning people in councils and learned judges can still get things wrong.”
None of us said Councils couldn’t get it wrong. But we just don’t see that they have in this case – hence why we all read the ruling first (unlike some I could mention). Even with all the facts of the case clearly pointing to an absence of homophobia, your speculative and disproportionately suspicious mind is determined to prove otherwise. You’ll be waiting a long time. What is your agenda exactly? I do not remotely believe you genuinely care about this man’s ineterest, it is something much more to do with your own ideas of freedom.
This isn’t about dissent, this is about common sense and rational thought – clearly alien concepts to people like you.
“They are not imune to, as Jane Fae puts it, the “ickiness” some people still have about same-sex relationships and can feel that one is more risky, potentially abusive and dangerous to a vulnerable person than a straight relationship.”
Again, you are speculating that they have an issue with same sex relationships when there is NO evidence of this. It’s a supposition. Intimiating bigotry and discomfort. Baseless conspiracy theories. Where is the evidence that supports your claim? You can’t make unfounded accusations like that. If you really feel so strongly, then you’d do well to get off your backside and get involved in the legal process to find out more. This comparison with the man flown to Amsterdam is pointless as none of us have seen the facts of the case. Until then, it’s not up for discussion – or rather your style of speculation.
“Yes, this is just an opinion, but despite some statements above, it is not an ill-informed one and the people who are pausing to criticise this ruling have genuine concerns and the right to voice them.”
It is an opinion and thankfully opinions can be dismissed by those who do not have the same bizarre agenda. Your ‘concern’ seems to stem purely from an innate compulsion to skew just about everything towards bigotry for the sake of it. If you can prove homophobia you can them claim some level of discrimination to yourself because you are from the same community. That is opportunistic and sick. I can well imagine you are the same with everyone else. If a white man says he prefers Phil Neville to Rio Ferdinand, you’ll say it’s racis, not because he prefers one playing style over the other. If a man prefers Des Lynham to Clare Balding, you’ll say it’s homophobic or sexist, not because he prefers one style of presenting over another. There is a persistent pulse of this kind coming from a minority of fringe nutters in our society who are paranoid and obsessed with conspiracy. And it isn’t welcome because it makes us all look bad – people stereotype easily and I’d rather the likes of you didn’t make things worse for us.
If you were ‘genuinely’ concerned, you would have raised specific, pertinent questions in a dignified manner. As opposed to screeching and speculating and painting yourself out to be a panic merchant. Why don’t you just run into a football stadium and shout fire while you’re at it?
“To quote “Although he knew what a condom was he was not able to put one on properly on a prosthetic penis – he put it on inside out so it could not be rolled down.”
This does not indicate that he was taught to use it, only that he knew what it was and a rough understanding of how to deploy it. If anything it shows that he hasn’t been taught, and if he has then not taught enough. However the judgement doesn’t say how many times he was allowed to try and put the condom on the prosthetic. Nor if he was asked to put it on the prosthetic or if he was just given the condom and left to put it on the most obvious object.”
Aside from this specifically being a sign that he is unable to understand how to put on a condom, this is just one point. There are many others that were considered also. You are making out this prevention order has been given out because of just ONE thing.
It is another skewing of the facts to suit a personal agenda.
TheSurburbanBi – I don’t know if it is the same council, but, as I said, each case is different and disabled people differ greatly so, if it was, it’s more likely that Alan was treated differently not because of his sexuality but because of his capacity to understand and his particular living situation and care package.
Again, well said. But it’s ok, you’re a woman, I’m sure the SuburbanBi won’t condemn you for your view as much as she would moi:)
notagain “Everyone has the right to a loving relationship and even meaningless intercourse if they prefer. No matter what their IQ is.”
By that statement, I assume you condone paedophilia? That is exactly the same principle. Sex with children is forbidden in order to protect them as they are considered not responsible for their actions. Likewise with this man. The age factor is irrelevant, it is the principle that is important.
Oh, and PS, Other comments on this post were NOT made by me.
Spanner, age is not irrelevant. A disabled adult with a low IQ is not a child. I have a disabled family member roughly my own age, who has a low IQ and severe disabilities. The need to care for and protect her over the years and decades, including the need to protect her sexually, has been a big concern for the family and the agencies that help care for her. But no one has forgotten that she is now a woman, a middle aged woman at that, not a child. And the respect, care and protection she is afforded as a grown woman with adult desires and impulses are not the same as she received when she was a child with a child’s physical, mental and emotional development respective to her disabilities.
Adults have a sexuality, even disabled adults, no matter how severe their disabiltiies, and the care and protection afforded to them have to be made with their age and development in mind. But they are not children and the constant comparison of them to children does not help people make the right decisions for them at the different stages of their lives.
That is all notagain seemed to be saying when he sadi, “Everyone has the right to a loving relationship and even meaningless intercourse if they prefer. No matter what their IQ is.” — it is, therefore, entirely unfair and inflamatory to accuse him of condoning paedophilia.
@mmm… “do I have to keep repeating that?”
No. You do not. You are not required to keep repeating anything. But neither is anyone here required to agree with you or accept your take on this or any situation. Why you feel that someone’s disagreement means they have some ‘agenda’ going or otherwise has anything against you (other than being annoyed at repeatedly being insulted by you, or reading others being insulted by you over and again, for no other reason than daring to voice an opinion contrary to yours) will forever remain beyond me.
And, along those lines, while you are not required to continue repeating anything, I am not required to respond to you any longer, on this or any other thread, now or at any time in the future.
I have to say why at 41 years old? What changed for them to take action?
Attention was only rised after reports of inappropriate behaviour towards children but no action.
Action was only taken when it was revealed he has a relationship with a man.
It’s as if they’re saying it wasn’t bad enough when with children but oh another man, no we better take action because he don’t know his own mind. As if being with a man was the last straw.
What about the other 20 years he presumably had some kind of sex drive.
The council failed because action should have been taken after the children reports so I can understand why this looks homophobic. I’m not saying it is mind but can see why people think it.
“Why you feel that someone’s disagreement means they have some ‘agenda’ going or otherwise has anything against you (other than being annoyed at repeatedly being insulted by you, or reading others being insulted by you over and again, for no other reason than daring to voice an opinion contrary to yours) will forever remain beyond me.”
You have shown you have an agenda by making numerous attempts to falsely accuse me of being anti-women and anti-trans. Repeating the same crap over and over again as if it will somehow make me or others accept your irrational, slanderous accusations as truth. I don’t insult individuals: I mock individuals expressing far-fetched, poory-informed and, sometimes, dangerous opinions. I have to address the individual, so I use their name. Someone has to counter these idiots – or do you suggest that every time Stephen Green or Nick Griffin makes an outlandish, scaremongering statement we just ignore him and don’t contest his views? This is a debating forum, what on earth did you think it was?
As you can have one agenda quite clearly in motion, why not others? From your post about your relative, you have tried to portray yourself as caring and compassionate, when actually this isn’t about your will to protect a relative’s sexuality, it’s about what you would want for yourself if you – as you are now – were in that situation. Which is irrelevant given that you are not being assessed unde the provisions Mental Capacity Act on the same grounds as this Alan chap because you do not have such disabilities.
If your relative was fulfilling the same criteria that led to Alan being prevented (NOT banned, as you keep insisting), then you would be doing her a great disservice by fighting an identical judgement that seeks to protect her. In fact, you would probably be putting her in danger, which just shows how your motives are not for her protection at all, but to fulfil your own brand of selfishness.
You have a rather different view of freedom and fairness to the majority of people on here and, clearly, our law makers. But then most nutters do – murderers, paedophiles, thieves…..they all think it’s ‘their right’ to follow their natural instincts and do whatever they please. What makes you any different?
“I have to say why at 41 years old? What changed for them to take action?
What about the other 20 years he presumably had some kind of sex drive.”
People’s behaviour changes over time. It could have worsened or perhaps no-one responded to him. Maybe he was not exploited or it was ignored by authorities. Many people develop sex addictions later in life – why could the same type of thing not apply to this man? Behaviour varies over time, in all of us.
“The council failed because action should have been taken after the children reports so I can understand why this looks homophobic. I’m not saying it is mind but can see why people think it.”
How has the Council failed? And how do you know they didn’t take any action when children became involved? A judgement is only the last stage, all manner of measures could have been taken before this.
I don’t understand why anyone could think this is homophobic. You are merely giving the nutters on here some sense of justification for their hysteria.
“What changed for them to take action?”
Interesting question, Jock, We can only speculate as we don’t know, but the fact that ‘Kieron’ is mentioned would make me guess that there was something different about this relationship or the circumstances. Just my opinion. For example, Alan’s partner could have been at a very different level of mental capacity, or one of the two of them could have tried to end the physical contact, or a problem arose when one of them assumed that other people would be just as keen as their partner.
Those are guesses from me, of course, but they’re based on situations that I’ve come across. There are many more possible scenarios, including a change in Alan’s living arrangements that meant he acted differently to previously and it was felt necessary to intervene for his sake.
- I should say that we often agree with each other, although that may be because we are both on the right. Here, however, the view of the continental right, or what is accepted for the continental right, appears to diverge from the English right.
I posted the above message on the wrong board.