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(UK) NI: Autistic 8 year old threatens to kill mom/self-harm

Nov 2, 2019, Irish News: [County Down, Northern Ireland] Mother tries to get placement for autistic son she fears could kill A MOTHER who fears her autistic eight-year-old son could kill due to extreme violent behaviour has taken legal action against a health trust over after its handling of his care. Julie McVeigh (42), a former nurse from Dromara, Co Down, said she has been “left in limbo” since his specialist respite placement was withdrawn by the South Eastern trust last month. Jack, who has a diagnosis of autism as well as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, has tried to stab and strangle his mother. He also started to harm himself. Police have been called to the family home but say they can do nothing because of his age and vulnerability. “There’s hardly a wall or door in my house that doesn’t have a hole in it and I frequently have black eyes,” Ms McVeigh said. “Jack has pulled a knife to me and also put a belt around my neck as I was driving. His anxiety levels are very high and the violence has escalated since the summer. I am petrified of him. “He has started self-harming and I really do believe we are getting to a situation where a potential fatality could happen. Jack needs proper help. I’ve been left in limbo with a child who is going to kill someone or himself. As a family, we are falling apart. I have no option but to go down the legal route.” The South Eastern trust has confirmed to The Irish News it is “actively engaging with this family”, adding that its multi-disciplinary team is “assessing and supporting them to address the needs of the child” as well as the “ongoing safety of the family”. However, earlier this week it emerged that a health professional told Ms McVeigh they were looking at the possibility of placing Jack in an adolescent psychiatric hospital inpatient unit – a move his mother described as “shocking” and “completely inappropriate”. The mother-of-five is a cardiac nurse who worked for the trust but gave up her job to care for Jack, who is her youngest child and attends Brookfield special needs school in Craigavon…. “Jack needs a proper psychiatric outpatient assessment and specialist support. “I want my child to have quality of life. Life is a constant struggle for him now.” When asked by The Irish News about the suitability of the placement, a trust spokeswoman said: “The multi-disciplinary team in the South Eastern trust are working together to assess the best placement for the child.”…


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