There are many reasons why we at Beds in the Orchard are campaigning for local inpatient care for the women of North Lancashire. We've covered these in some of our previous posts. Isolation, financial cost, disruption, distress for both the service user and their families. Children separated from their parents. Women separated from their families. All with no chance of being returned to their local area.
When a section 3 can see you detained in hospital for 6 months, its glaringly obvious why being away from home for that long can have long lasting and negative effects for the women being treated.
But is this really discrimination?
The Trust tell us that this is due to "A peak in demand for male beds". Lets apply that to something else.
If there was a peak in demand for school places for boys, a school would not just take male pupils, they would also take female pupils, with both boys and girls having to go to other schools if there wasn't a place.
If there was a peak in demand for emergency care due to men having accidents, an A&E department wouldn't just treat men and send the women to a different area.
If there was a peak in demand with more men needing cardiac care than women needing cardiac care, a hospital wouldn't only treat men and send women out of the area.
So why is it acceptable when there are more men requiring psychiatric care than women, to only treat the men and send women out of the area?
Our position at Beds In the Orchard is that it is not acceptable at all.