Susan was an older woman with learning disabilities. She had a fall and was taken into hospital. Susan had a doll which she loved and took it with her into hospital.

When Susan’s family went to visit her in the hospital, they found the doll on the floor broken. Susan was very upset because her doll was very important to her. It being broken really impacted Susan’s mental health.

Susan’s family believed the doll was damaged deliberately to punish Susan for not doing as she was told. The right to be free from serious harm. The hospital offered to replace the doll, but they would not apologise and would not investigate what had happened. Susan’s family contacted lawyers who helped her argue that her treatment was inhuman and degrading (Article 3 of the Human Rights Act).

This was settled out of court and the hospital made a financial award to enable Susan to move out of the hospital and help her continue her life. The hospital also agreed to investigate the incident to make sure it did not happen to anybody else.