Read Eileen Chubb’s special report “Reality CCTV Check” from Compassion in Care.
Click here: Reality CCTV Check Oct 2017
Rather than stopping neglect and abuse, CCTV in care homes can in fact cause care standards to fall, she says. Evidence suggests this is because staff feel under pressure to perform in communal areas where CCTV cameras are installed, even if that means leaving residents in bed, cutting down on time spent with them or checking their medication is correct, and not sitting down to write paperwork records, in case they look lazy compared to rushing round doing physical tasks. CCTV can also cover for abuse, the abuser can put on a show for the cameras that they are doing a good job and then behind the scenes continue to be abusive. Most examples of abuse are caught on hidden cameras filming covertly that tend to be planted by families as a last resort, when neither the home nor the authorities have acted on complaints. Problems found during inspections have often not been picked up by CCTV cameras, they could have been prevented by hands-on supervision rather than relying on CCTV. In Eileen’s view, ‘the only camera that would be truly effective is the camera that goes everywhere’ and that is not CCTV.