Statement by XY to the News of the World

” I am an assistant male nurse at the Ely Homes, Cowbridge Road, Cardiff, run by the local corporation for the mentally retarded. In the male section are four wards housing 200 patients aged 12 to 90. I have been nursing there for the past ten months.

” Sometime towards the end of December or beginning of January I saw a junior night nurse named ‘Q’ on the night shift in Ward 23. He took some buttons from a patient named Lovelace. It started as a game but then the nurse turned nasty and he beat the patient three times in a matter of thirty minutes. The patient later had two fits.

” I reported the incident to the Chief Male Nurse. He told me that if I made an official complaint I would not be popular with the staff and things could be made unpleasant for me.

“Things have been unpleasant for me. I have to perform the lowliest tasks which should be done by the cleaners.

” In Ward 21 in January ‘M’, the charge nurse, with ‘N’, a staff nurse, gave a beating to an elderly patient. He had refused to move from the bath­room door. He was taken from a sitting room to a ward where there were no witnesses. When the three emerged the old man had a cut on the back of his head. He was taken to the bathroom and “M’ stitched the cut.

“1 was in the bathroom with a nurse named ” O’. The bath and the patient’s clothes were covered with blood. A patient was ordered to wash his clothes. The next day the doctor on his rounds was told the old man had slipped during a scuffle. No complaint was made.

” Recently in Ward 17A a staff nurse named Holworth and a female nurse named ‘I’ were seeing to a bedridden patient who was crippled down one side and had no feeling in his right arm. As they turned him over to massage his back, the right hand touched the female nurse accidentally and Holworth struck the patient a violent blow on his face. The patient had a bruised cheekbone and his eye is still weeping. Next day Holworth said the patient had slipped and hit his eye on the bed.

” In Ward 23 there is a charge nurse named ‘A’ who everyone considers to be a sadist. He has an assistant named ‘R’ who falls into the same category. A young patient named Masefield is constantly going into the kitchen which is out of bounds. He is regularly beaten by the two nurses. On one occasion ‘A’ took him into his office and beat him. I heard the screams.

” ‘A’ takes a thick stick on his rounds and threatens patients with it if they are not quick enough. About four weeks ago he had a number of patients in the yard and told them he was going to give them a bath. He ordered them to strip and started hosing them down with cold water. One patient was screaming.

” ‘A’ caught a sight of another nurse watching him from a balcony and he handed the hose to Jonson. Jonson is mentally retarded but a powerful man. He is allowed to beat other patients on the slightest excuse and without any remonstration from the staff. When they sit in a line while waiting for a shave, Jonson will walk along the line, slapping them.

“The senior nursing staff often have the best cuts of meat and so on before they are issued to the patients. All the staff have breakfast on the hospital when they are not supposed to. On the days when each patient should have an orange, an apple and a banana, they are lucky to get just an orange between two of them. The amount of foodstuffs stolen by the staff is unbelievable and this applies to the sweets, fruit and other luxuries brought in for the patients.

” When I asked about the disappearance of a block of cheese, I was told to mind my own business. Recently a mother brought in an expensive toy for her son and it disappeared. She kicked up a fuss and it was brought back into the ward four days later.

“At the beginning of May, clothing was brought into the hospital for distribution to patients. The senior staff shared it amongst themselves.

“There are two doctors, the head psychiatrist and a JHMO. I do not think they care too much.

” Patients are being beaten quite regularly when a little gentle persuasion is all that is necessary to obtain their co-operation “.

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