This is the shocking moment a vulnerable care home resident is allegedly slapped, shaken and shouted at by a worker. The resident is sleeping on a sofa at Selborne Care Home, Handsworth Wood, Birmingham, when the carer attempts to wake him by appearing to slap his stomach and then pull on his ears and nose.
During the 41-second incident, the staff member also allegedly shakes and shouts at the man – and clicks his fingers in his face.
Police are now investigating the mobile phone footage which was secretly recorded and handed to the force by Esther Lee, 23, a former employee at the home.
The care home has also reported the matter to police and has stated the worker in the footage has since left the company.
Miss Lee said: ‘I want this video out there so that people can see exactly what happened in the home where I worked.
‘I secretly recorded the resident being abused and was horrified by what I saw.
‘I brought this to management’s attention on a number of occasions, and tried to work in accordance with them to raise their standards. And after many months of failed attempts I felt as though I had no other alternative but to contact the external bodies.
‘I haven’t done this for money, but simply just to raise awareness.’
Miss Lee recorded the first clip on June 10, 2012, showing the alleged attack on the resident.
A second clip, recorded on June 25, appears to show a distressed female resident seen standing behind a table between two workers. A third video, recorded 20 minutes later, shows her in the same position.
The care home said one member of staff has been suspended, while another is on maternity leave.
‘I reported what I saw to the Care Quality Commission but there was no action taken that I know of,’ said Miss Lee.
‘I told officials I had video evidence but they did not ask to see it.
‘I also went to Birmingham’s Social Services and again flagged up the videos. But yet again no one asked to see them.’
Birmingham City Council says it has no record of Miss Lee’s complaint. Selborne Care Home said that management had not received any complaints from Miss Lee about the treatment of residents.
A spokesman for Selborne Care Home said a member of staff had been suspended once managers had seen the videos.
‘The company immediately reported the matter to the police and Birmingham Social Services to initiate the Authority’s Safeguarding procedure,’ he said.
‘The company will be undertaking its own investigation into the actions of the staff involved following the Safeguarding procedure, which is normal practice.
‘The male worker seen in the footage left his employment with the company in September 2012.
‘In regard to the members of staff viewed in the other video footage, one person has been suspended from duty pending investigation. The second is currently on maternity leave.
‘The company will be in a position to answer questions in more detail once the investigations have been completed by all the agencies involved.’
Miss Lee left the care home in September and took the company to a tribunal for unfair dismissal, which ruled in favour of Selborne Care. She says she has appealed against the decision.
Asked specifically about Miss Lee’s dismissal, Selborne Care said: ‘The matter regarding Esther Lee’s dismissal is a private and confidential.
‘However, I can confirm that, as a result of her dismissal, Esther brought a claim against Selborne Care for unfair dismissal. The Tribunal found in favour of the Company.’
Selborne Care provides care and support for people with learning disabilities and those who may have associated mental health needs.
On its website, the company boasts: ‘Selborne Care prides itself on being a quality provider of specialist, flexible and innovative care and support for people with learning disabilities.
‘We believe the key to successfully meeting the needs of people in our care is the skills, qualities and attitudes of our staff. After a rigorous selection process, all staff complete a full induction programme, followed by ongoing training and supervision to ensure high quality service is achieved.’
A spokesman for Birmingham Social Services said: ‘Our priority as ever is to protect the welfare of vulnerable people in Birmingham and in the case of Selborne Care Home we have worked with the management team to ensure acceptable standards of care are in place.
‘Until recently we had not seen the video footage but we do know that the home management has previously disciplined staff and been very proactive in respect to safeguarding issues.
‘With any home we liaise with the residents, their relatives, the CQC and the home if any safeguarding concerns are brought to our attention.
‘We openly encourage individuals to voice concerns and we will respond immediately to investigate those concerns.’
A West Midlands Police spokesman said: ‘We have received an allegation of historic abuse from a Birmingham care home. We are in the early stages of an investigation and are currently liaising with partner agencies.’
A Care Quality Commission spokesman added: ‘We can confirm the Care Quality Commission received anonymous information regarding Selborne Care Home in Handsworth Wood which related to serious allegations in September 2012.
‘This information was immediately referred to Birmingham City Council as the lead authority for investigating safeguarding matters, in line with our usual procedures. CQC has been in regular contact with the council regarding its investigation of these matters and has been monitoring the home closely.
‘CQC did not view footage in this case due to the investigation being led by the local authority. However, we have recently taken a decision to look at filming of this nature, regardless of whether other authorities might be carrying out any investigation.
‘As with all services registered with CQC, Selborne Care Home is subject to the on-going monitoring of its compliance with the national standards of quality and safety, which includes unannounced inspections. Since June last year CQC has carried out four unannounced inspections at the home.
‘The most recent of these inspections was on June 13, when CQC staff visited the home with an expert by experience (someone who is not a CQC inspector but has valuable experience of using or being involved with specific care services) to assess the quality of care being provided.