We are very angry about the torture that people with a learning disability have suffered in Winterbourne View Hospital, Bristol
This is the letter that we have sent to Andrew Lansley, Minister of the Government. We sent the letter on 3rd June and we are still waiting to hear from him. As soon as we do hear, we will let you know and paste what they say up here. Please help us to complain about this.
The Right Honourable Andrew Lansley MP
House of Commons
SW1 A 0AA
3rd June 2011
Dear Mr Lansley
We are writing to you about the scandal of abuse in Winterbourne View Hospital, Bristol, for people with learning disabilities where staff were torturing the people who lived there. We saw the BBC Panorama programme and the headlines in the BBC and it made us feel very angry and sad: it makes us wonder how many more people with a learning disability are living like that.
We are the committee of the award winning international Oska Bright short film festival. We show films made by people with learning disabilities. These are powerful films which give positive messages by telling people stories which aim to change what the general public think about learning disabled people and our lives.
We show a different side to learning disability. It is a very positive festival and the only one of its kind in the world. We know, from asking people who come to the festival, that the films have the power to change lives for the better. We show how people with learning disabilities have the ability to live a more independent life and how we, as a community, have moved on from the days of large institutions and the types of abuse that happen in those places.
We offer you our library of films and our abilities as film makers, and ask you to work with us to show positive images from our community that challenge the types of discrimination that comes from out dated models of care.
People with learning disabilities are equal citizens. We must not be treated this way. We want to show other people that we speak out, live independent lives, get married etc just like everyone else.
We look forward to helping you give positive messages that balances the reporting that we have seen this week.
The Oska Bright Steering Committee
Caroline Lucas, MP
Lord Steve Bassam
Mark Goldring, CEO, MENCAP
Mark Thompson, BBC Director General
Alan Rusbridger, Editor, Guardian Newspaper
Paul Bonham, Arts Council England South East
Amanda Nevill, Director, BFI
Bill Randall, Leader of Brighton and Hove Council
Oska Bright is the only award winning short film festival anywhere in the world that is programmed, managed and delivered by people with learning disabilities.
We had a really good meeting today – it was fantastic!
We continued to look at lots of films by young people for our uScreen Young People’s screening in Oska Bright 2011. We saw some great films like “My Tortoise, Temple” a lovely film about a young girl - she took her tortoise into school for her classmates to paint pictures of - and it is a silent film.
“Beach Hut” was about a group of young people’s favourite place – the beach!
“Phone Stealing” Is about people who keep stealing phones but in the end the woman they tried to steal a phone from got her own back.
We enjoyed watching all of the films by young people.
We also talked about our jobs for next week. We are involved in a Brighton Festival Upstream at Sallis Benny Theatre. We are also doing a question, answer session and film screenings too.
Oska Bright May 13th - Choosing films for Oska Bright 2011
By Matthew Hellett and Sarah Watson
Although it’s meant to be an unlucky day – it’s not for us! We’ve been looking at films entered by young people into Oska Bright 2011, so we can chose a screening completely made by young people. One of the films was all about teeth – how to clean your teeth, how to look after your teeth – it was a musical and an animation. This made us laugh a lot – we liked it!
There was another film about relationships – what are the main problems that young people with a learning disability face when they find love and what happens to them in the end – how they are told what to do and not asked what they want to do. A great film about a touchy subject – and one very close to our hearts.
We saw an archive film about how young people with learning disabilities weren’t treated very nicely in the old days – about the 1930’s/1940’s – some young people had added animations to the black and white film – this made it quite interesting and it was the first film like this we’ve had in Oska Bright. It talked about hopes and aspirations – we’ve got as many rights as any other people.
We loved “Horoscope Crazy” – it reminds us of a street fighter, and about what it’s like when we fight with our families. It’s very funny!
We are enjoying selecting the films for Oska Bright – our Festival is going to be amazing – put the dates in your diary now. Its in Brighton at Brighton Corn Exchange from Tuesday 22nd November until Thursday 24th November 2011!