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15 year old found dead at Lancaster Farms YOI

1st Dec 2007 | in Social Care

Prison Service: 15-year-old found dead at Lancaster Farms YOI Posted: 29 November 2007 writes Mithran Samuel A 15-year-old boy was found hanging in his cell at Lancaster Farms Young Offender Institution in the early hours of this morning.

The Prison Service said that staff attempted to resuscitate Liam Phillip McManus and paramedics attended but he failed to recover and was pronounced dead at 7.45am. His death will be investigated by the prisons and probation ombudsman, as with every death in custody.

The news comes with an inqueat underway into the death of 16 year old Gareth Price, who was also found hanging in his cell at Lancaster Farms, in January 2005.

Campaign group Inquest said that Liam was the 30th child to die in state custody since 1990 and was serving a sentence of only one month and 14 days, for breach of licence.

Co-director of Inquest Deborah Coles said: "The responsibility for this death rests with a criminal justice system that sends a child to prison for one month and 14 days. This death raises issues that go beyond the prison walls and to the heart of society’s collective responsibility for tolerating a system that sends children into institutions that cannot keep them safe."

A Prison Service spokesperson said: "Our deepest sympathies are with Liam’s family and friends."

My Response

My heart goes out to the family who will be devistated at their loss and it is a sad loss to lose yet another child in the care system. A child would be very unhappy to take their own life and was probably bullied or treated badly by the staff and others there. Why the hell such a young boy would be driven to this is very sad. My conolences to his family. The last child who hung himself was abused and no matter what the staff of that institution say, there is no way a child would hang themselves if they were being treated fairly. I would be interested to know if this young lad was subjected to restraint and various other methods of abuse which is sadly legal in the care system to a child and gives staff free reign to abuse a child legally.

Many more children and teens are suffering at the hands of institutions. Childrens homes for example need to be renamed child abuse centres as they abuse the children in many of them. What amazes me is the government seems to be under the illusion that children are safe in these places and they are not. The staff (although not all staff) seem to think they are better than the children they care for and they act like model citizens in society and yet they teach the children abuse and bad manners because many of the staff behave that way towards the children.

On the road I am on there is a childrens home and this is how dishonest one member of staff is. I had flowers sent to me by a friend in Ireland. Lots of red roses and they were accidently delivered to the childrens home. I went and asked for them as they were mine and one senior staff member took them home just before I got there and she was rung up and she refused to hand them back knowing they werent hers. That member of staff is dishonest and shouldnt be working with children because i would never keep something that wasnt mine and id never teach my children that sort of behaviour but that member of staff, a so called pillar of society was greedy and dishonest by keeping what wasnt hers. It makes you wonder who was dragged up, her or me. If i had a letter sent to my house by accident and it was meant for my neighbour id go and give it to them, not keep it. I went to that home for a job a few years ago and during my interview the senior member of staff acted abismally. A teenage girl had just slashed her wrists and went to the office upset. That senior staff member told her to go away and come back later as the poor girl stood there in tears and dripping blood. That woman didnt show an ounce of love or care and didnt even want to clean her up. I then told the woman that i had been like that girl and her behaviour wasnt right towards the girl and the nastyworker decided i was not suitable for the job just because she knew i would not tolerate that kind of treatment to any child and i told her i was horrified at her actions. People like her should not be working with children let alone running a childrens home. Children in care in any kind of home/institution need love and care not abuse or a torturer worker to kick them even further down when they are supposed to care. All homes should be subject to spot checks where someone turns up without an appointment to check on the home, staff and children there. You would be suprised how many bad workers would get caught out if they didnt know someone was turning up to check.

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