Contaminated Blood: Lawyers allegedly deceiving courts claiming old evidence ignored for years is “new” (statement)

Peter Longstaff victim of Contaminated Blood disaster who died in 2005 with wife Carol

Victims of the Haemophilia Contaminated Blood disaster described by Lord Winston as the “worst medical treatment disaster in the history of the NHS” have won the right to take their case to the High Court according to the Guardian (see following link)

Contaminated Blood scandal victims win ruling to launch High Court action

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/sep/26/contaminated-blood-scandal-victims-win-ruling-to-launch-high-court-action

Haemophiliacs were infected with HIV and hepatitis C after receiving contaminated blood products in the 1970s and 80s used to treat their condition. The blood was often imported from the US and later traced back via batch numbers to virally high- risk donors including prisoners at Arkansas State Penitentiary.

However campaigners have raised serious concerns that evidence presented as “new” in some media that allegedly formed part of an application to the court is in fact evidence that is many years old and was placed in the public domain by myself as well as presented in face to face meetings with government officials.

Colette Wintle a respected independent campaigner for women with bleeding disorders who was infected with hepatitis C wrote to Liz Carroll CEO at the National Haemophilia Society,

“We can’t claim to be upholding truth and justice if we are supporting a case on misinformation and evidence that was presented over and over again directly to government since 2009. The government is already aware that the information is not new. I am astounded and appalled by the news today that JJ Evans and his solicitors have held their first hearing in the high courts in a case that is being presented as serving up new evidence! This new evidence is apparently based on the documents Jason Evans has uncovered, however as we all know he is using documents acquired under FOI which are actually the redacted version of what Carol Grayson had released via her husband’s solicitors back in 2006 with an arrangement with the DOH. Not only were these documents 25 years of hard research, but many originated from Carol and Pete’s litigation case against government back in 1991 and Jason is dishonestly using them as “new evidence” which even Jeff Courtenay agreed  with Carol, was a lie.

More worryingly , Carol did contact Collins Law who are acting for this high court case, to advise them that the documents shown to them belonged to her husband’s legal case. She also advised them that she was the only person in the UK to have challenged the DOH on it’s definitive report “The self Sufficiency Report 1973-1991 with an award winning dissertation. It cannot be ignored that she was awarded the Sir Michael Young Researcher of the Year Award 2009 which is the top social science award in the UK. Oh and by the way the co- chair of the APPG for Haemophilia and Contaminated Blood ,Sir Peter Bottomley presented the prize to her. I know this because I was there alongside your predecessor Chris James at the ceremony. Sir Peter’s wife  Virginia Bottomley ex Health Minister at the time in 1991, also designated the haemophilia cases back in 1991 as having a “special case status” well documented in the Hansard. It is interesting that this appears to have been completely forgotten about and ignored in subsequent negotiations until this point.  

 

All of these documents were referenced in Hansard, Newsnight April 2007, and numerous press articles, which means clearly they are not new but old news, and sadly the Haemophilia Society since 2009 have sat on this information and failed to use it for the benefit of the society’s members at a point when politically Lord Archer’s conclusions and recommendations in his report could have been implemented. Where does the society stand on this Liz?”

Statement from Carol Grayson on the news that a legal case can proceed

(27th September 2017)

As a campaigner of nearly 3 decades, I am deeply concerned that a legal firm has gone to the High Court claiming “new evidence” according to the Daily Mail when in fact what has been highlighted so far as “new” is in fact old evidence that was ignored by government, the Haemophilia Society, Health Authorities, plasma companies, the GMC, human rights groups and 5 sets of solicitors for years. That is part of what Andy Burnham calls “a criminal cover-up” on an industrial scale”.

Daily Mail article where old evidence returned to the Department of Health by myself in 2006 to be released through the National Archives at Kew and features in my ESRC Michael Young award winning dissertation is falsely claimed as “new” by Jason Evans,

“The new evidence was found by Jason Evans, 27, whose father Jonathan died in 1993 with HIV and hepatitis C after being given contaminated blood products.

Mr Evans, a marketing consultant from Coventry, spent 12 months gathering thousands of documents through Freedom of Information requests and from the National Archives. He said: ‘There has long been concern that there was the use of ‘human guinea pigs’. This is the first time we have evidence that says it in black and white.'”

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-4662690/Patients-infected-contaminated-samples.html

Evidence falsely claimed as “new” by Jason Evans in the Daily Mail can be found in Chapter 4 of my dissertation (2006) and in the Chronology see link,

http://haemophilia.org.uk/support/day-day-living/patient-support/contaminated-blood/dissertation-carol-grayson-contaminated-blood-products

There is some debate whether Collins Law are still referring to the evidence as “new” which was the basis of their application to the Court for group litigation in the first place. Some media have had to retract the word “new” from articles on the case after complaints were made showing original documents. Yet to my knowledge if Collins Law have changed their mind they have not informed the High Court yet that this evidence is not new?

My awards are for “truth and justice” so it is important to highlight corrects dates of knowledge as to when information was first placed in the public domain. Misinformation is not something for a human rights campaigner to celebrate.

All I have seen so far is that much of the evidence from my late husband’s litigation files which I returned to government in 2006 via solicitors Blackett Pratt and Hart to be released through the National Archives at Kew rehashed under another person’s name. This is exactly what happened in the 2010 Judicial Review against the then Secretary of State for Health, won on key letters myself and Colette Wintle acquired in 2004 in response to several questions on the compensation paid out to haemophiliacs in Eire on a “no liability” basis on the grounds of “extraordinary suffering”. Lord Warner has still not been held to account for misleading parliament.

Contaminated Blood documents I had returned to government in 2006 were released via the National Archives at Kew. These were accessed legally and formed part of my dissertation awarded Michael Young award 2009 (SEE HANSARD BELOW).

                                                      Haemophilia

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many and what proportion of documents relating to the infection of haemophiliacs with contaminated blood products which have been returned to the Department of Health by Blackett, Heart and Pratt Solicitors have (a) undergone independent legal examination and (b) been passed to the Haemophilia Society; [119897]

(2) how many documents relating to the infection of haemophiliacs with contaminated blood products have been returned to the Department by Blackett, Heart and Pratt solicitors; and if she will make a statement. [119898]

Caroline Flint: In May 2006, Blackett Hart and Pratt solicitors returned 623 documents to departmental solicitors. All the documents were reviewed by independent counsel, before they were sent to officials in the Department. The vast majority of these documents (604 in total) were released in line with the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 2000. The documents were sent to a number of individuals at their request and to the Haemophilia Society.

Some documents were withheld under FOI. However, officials are further reviewing these papers with a view to releasing them if possible.

https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200607/cmhansrd/cm070221/text/70221w0023.htm

 

This evidence was repeatedly presented to government and formed part of my ESRC award winning research in 2006. The government have confirmed many times in writing that a junior civil servant “inadvertently destroyed” government’s own records so are relying on copies which I discovered and sent back.

 

Other campaigners and I are awaiting further legal advice. What is disturbing is that a case I was actively involved in and was closed down by a firm several years ago (that has now gone into administration) has recently been viewed by another firm of solicitors who contacted the client to say “I have reviewed your file of papers and consider you have good prospects of success at this stage and confirm that my firm is willing to act for you on the same terms and conditions” (as the previous solicitors). Why were the earlier solicitors so keen to close the case down despite a large amount of key evidence being presented to them and to a QC by myself and the client?

 

Any public inquiry must include in its remit to investigate how legal cases were handled over the years. One note in my husband’s old legal files reads, “I can no longer lie to my clients”. Why should any lawyer be lying to their clients?

 

Carol Grayson (Haemophilia Action UK)

E-mail to Jeff Courtney, Policy and Public Affairs Manager at the Haemophilia Society 16th August 2017 asking for information on Collins Law case

Jeff,

 

I have not seen Collins Law solicitors retract that the so called “new” evidence is in fact rather old. However if any is presented in court that was put out by myself earlier as new this will be rigorously challenged. If solicitors give false information on dates when released and pass off old as new … what hope for truth and justice! We cannot have lawyers colluding with those that harmed us…. That would be a major “conflict of interest”! If the Haemophilia Society is also knowingly supporting media and lawyers putting out false dates of knowledge that is also a major “conflict of interest” and no different to behaviour of the past. Relevant people have now been informed that information is far from new and that I was blocked. Colette and I have many old letters highlighting this.

 

http://www.collinslaw.co.uk/post.php?s=2017-07-04-momentum-in-contaminated-blood-scandal-grows-as-collins-apply-for-a-group-litigation-order-collins-solicitors-press-release-dated-4-july-2017

 

So if lawyers have backtracked as you suggest please share. We aim to go to court on the evidence as it was produced not on a false narrative… (people pretending its new just so they can get into the press). Why on earth would I share evidence with campaigners or lawyers putting out a false narrative or doing damage limitation for government. This is also abusive behaviour to those that have repeatedly presented this evidence to government that was ignored… to Lord Hunt, to Yvette Cooper and to Anne Milton and many others

 

Carol

I did receive a reply to my public question from the Haemophilia Society on the 22nd August 2017 which should have elicited a public response but the Haemophilia Society as ever is shrouded in secrecy and did not want the reply made public. They have a long history of threatening those who oppose them therefore it was no surprise to be on the receiving end of a written threat once again though the email is marked “confidential” so the content cannot be shared here. 

This is disturbing given they are an organization that is supposed to help and advise members and the reasons Collins Law launched their case is a matter of public interest for which they themselves were keen to speak to press and put out a public statement. The Haemophilia Society has a long history of destroying documents allegedly to hide wrongdoing. The disappearance of documents was recently confirmed by a former staff member. They have a long history of intimidating haemophiliacs and their families which must be addressed at any forthcoming Public Inquiry! Those who question or challenge are left out of meetings. There are also instances where confidentiality has been breached. In addition to ongoing issues with the Society, female campaigners face daily misogyny and abuse despite working hard to release key evidence.

Back in the 1990s the Haemophilia Society threatened to remove me from a protest because I was campaigning for those with HIV and at that time they did not want haemophiliacs with both HIV and hepatitis C at Westminster fighting for justice and were EXCLUDING those with HIV. The Haemophilia Society caused great distress dividing off haemophiliacs by virus, pitting one haemophiliac against another. This was extremely cruel causing serious splits within families.

Links

Michael Young Prize winner 2009: Tackling the blood trade (ESRC Issue 4 2009)

https://web.archive.org/web/20101015225531/http://www.esrcsocietytoday.ac.uk:80/ESRCInfoCentre/about/CI/CP/societynow/issue4/blood_trade.aspx

Praise for Press Campaign nearly 10 years on (2009)

http://www.holdthefrontpage.co.uk/2009/news/praise-for-press-campaign-nearly-ten-years-on/

Copies of lost “blood row” papers found (Guardian, March 21st 2006)

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2006/may/21/health.medicineandhealth

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.

 

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Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) deny allegations of links with Transnational Terror Groups

STATEMENT (14.9.2017):

Links

ARSA: Who are the Arakan Rohingya Salvation

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/09/myanmar-arakan-rohingya-salvation-army-170912060700394.html

End

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.

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UK Haemophilia Society alleged to have destroyed contaminated blood documents

Why did person(s) at the Haemophilia Society go on their own massive shredding spree, destroying key evidence? (Image via Haemophilia Society)

Contaminated blood campaigners have had a long and often troubled relationship with the UK Haemophilia Society, the organization supposed to be an “advocate” for the community going back decades. The Society is alleged to have withheld key documents and given incorrect information and advice contributing to the deaths and subsequent cover-up of 2,400 patients through HIV/HCV infection from blood products. These were factor concentrates manufactured from pooled plasma consisting of tens of thousands of US paid donors during the 1970s and 80s. Many more haemophiliacs were infected and are now sick and dying.

Plasma was often sourced from tortured and virally infected US prisoners (photos and details supplied by relatives of inmates) ignored by then Prime Minister Tony Blair when handed in to no 10 by Lord Alf Morris of Manchester (Britain’s first Minister for Disabled people) and I in 2001. This treatment was given to haemophiliacs on the NHS and put profit before safety. For years the Haemophilia Society received funding from government and international plasma companies and was accused by many of having a “conflict of interest”.

In recent years concerns have arisen regarding the alleged trashing of key Haemophilia Society documents, wiping out much of the history of contaminated blood once held at their office.

I was alerted to this fact by Dan Farthing-Sykes (Haemophilia Scotland) a former employee of the Haemophilia Society when some of his own work disappeared after he tried to restore material and build up the archives. This was echoed by other former employees and a former volunteer worker (name withheld to protect his identity) who wrote the following regarding the Haemophilia Society on Facebook,

“To hold previous staff members at the HS to account is, basically not the point. Historically it was the Trustee Board of the organisation who didn’t push for govt accountability and gratefully accepted their medical expert groups advice without thought “the chances of factor v111 infecting a patient with HIV is between one in a thousand and two thousand”. 

Of course their medical experts were the ones who, with scant exception” were in the thrall and pay of pharmaceutical companies.

Those ex trustees, in many cases from the 60’s 70’s 80’s 90’s were hoping successive governments would listen to a moral argument when they should have followed activists leads and kept the dialogue in its true form.

The trustees in the early to mid noughties appointed incompetent CEO and remained even more conservative ( with a few exceptions). Some of this Board and CEO were more interested in pharma jollies and high profile Westminster jaunts. There were committed trustees and staff but they were marginalised to the point of sacking volunteers for questioning policy.

So, I worked there for eleven years and know all of this to be true. While those complicit should hang their heads in shame it does not necessarily reflect on the current board and staff. I think they are fully aware of this and support them in their endeavours.

I post this in answer to posters who are unsure of historical events. I left the organisation with a fully documented timeline worked on by many. The previous administration seem to have lost this which is unforgivable.

Yes Carole you did all these things (referring to an earlier post detailing my efforts to expose alleged wrongdoing) but were also marginalised because what you said was uncomfortable.

Bottom line is that the younger generations of people affected by haemophilia must always remember that it was activists who eventually got recombinant for all and a new generation must continue to question all medical and financial decisions made by health departments.”

Disturbingly Dan’s valuable time at the Haemophilia Society was sometimes wasted at times as he can no longer locate his own files that he collated. He has since relocated to work as CEO for Haemophilia Scotland seeking truth and justice from over the border.

These destroyed papers could have helped give answers on went wrong to survivors of what Andy Burnham former Secretary of State for Health calls “a criminal cover-up on an industrial scale” and to the bereaved relatives.

A history of missing documents

The Department of Health (DOH) already admits to destroying many of their own blood policy documents which means their so called definitive report, Self-sufficiency in blood products in England and Wales: A chronology from 1973 to 1991″ 2006 is nigh on useless. Link here,

http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20070402112948/http://www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Publications/PublicationsPolicyAndGuidance/DH_4130917

I critiqued the DOH report for my ESRC Michael Young award winning dissertation written in 2006 showing that what was most important wasn’t what was included in the report… but the evidence that was left out. Link below,

http://haemophilia.org.uk/support/day-day-living/patient-support/contaminated-blood/dissertation-carol-grayson-contaminated-blood-products/

The DOH also repeatedly lost any documents that campaigners sent to their offices or handed over in meetings at Westminster.

The Haemophilia Society finally agreed to put my dissertation up on their site, years after it was published and only with a change of staff. I was informed by Dan it had previously been blocked by a trustee. Ironically the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) prize was in the name of a politician and social scientist, Michael Young and presented to me by Sir Peter Bottomley, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Haemophilia (APPG) though in his capacity as a supporter of social sciences. As my research won not one but 2 awards, it remains a mystery as to why it took well over a decade for the Haemophilia Society to put the dissertation on their website and the DOH still haven’t addressed the findings?

Lord Archer of Sandwell did use my evidence extensively through-out the Archer Inquiry and echoed the recommendations for “compensation on a parity with Eire” (a phrase I coined years back) but the Labour government refused to implement the recommendations based on incorrect information from Lord Warner who repeatedly misled parliament and tried to argue the case in the UK was different to Eire.

This was overturned in a Judicial Review at the High Court in 2010 in the name of haemophiliac Andrew March based on letters, evidence obtained by Colette Wintle and I in 2004 from Irish lawyers, Irish haemophilia Society and Eire government. Once Ireland was shown to have paid out compensation on the grounds of “extraordinary suffering” (as opposed to liability) Westminster changed the goalposts yet again when told by a judge they must reconsider Archer’s recommendations. They came back saying they did not have to take the same approach as Eire. Once again government denied haemophiliacs and their families proper compensation based on loss and need.

Unscrupulous right-wing media misreporting

Recently some unscrupulous right-wing British media have tried to claim that documents from my dissertation are “newly discovered” in 2017 by another campaigner, thereby assisting government with “damage limitation” regarding contaminated blood. This gross misreporting helped to hide the fact that key politicians in the Department of Health were presented with the evidence years ago and did absolutely nothing to address the findings!

Ironically not only did these documents form part of my 2006 dissertation given to Anne Milton at Westminster in 2010 (witnessed by fellow campaigner Colette Wintle) but I even organized through a Newcastle solicitor to have these papers returned to the DOH to be released in batches through the National Archives at Kew. (Years back I was informed in writing that a junior civil servant had “inadvertantly destroyed” government’s own documents). Laughably my returned documents were the so called “new” documents as falsely stated in the media and were in fact old and ignored evidence!

To return to the Haemophilia Society alleged missing documents, I sent the following e-mail to Dan on Sept 11th 2017 with my questions.

Dear Dan,

 

Now that there is to be a public inquiry, can you please confirm who destroyed the Haemophilia Society records which you mentioned to me before. I understood you also lost a lot of material that you were compiling which would have meant a lot of time and effort wasted. This is very relevant as campaigners sent many letters and documents (evidence) to the Society over the years which would reveal a history of concerns and the Society’s response at that time. There should be records of meetings including those we attended, Society letters to government and others, campaign strategy, old pamphlets, Society newsletters, details of Weber Shandwick PR  company involvement, advise to the Society from medical staff etc. It is deeply disturbing to know that they were allegedly wilfully destroyed and no longer exist.

 

Can you tell me, who destroyed these important records?

 

In what year were they destroyed?

 

What action was taken against the person(s) who did this?

 

Thanks

 

Kind Regards

 

Carol

This is Dan’s reply to me on Sept 11th 2017 regarding the alleged destroyed/missing documents

Morning Carol,

There seems to have been lots of loses over the years.

 

When I got to The Haemophilia Society records from the 1970s and 1980s were almost non-existent.  It seems that every time the charity had moved offices some material had been lost and there were also rumours of a fire (although I now think this might not have actually happened).  There relevant books of the trustee’s minutes were already missing (I think they may have been liberated by a campaigner at some point and other things may have gone at the same time) and there wasn’t even a complete set of Bulletins or HaemoFacts.  I found no records from the old medical advisory group at all.  I assume there would have been references to their advisory group recommendation in the missing minute books but I doubt I’ll ever know. I never saw records of letter exchanges with campaigners or anything relating to the relationship with Weber Shandwick.

 

While I was working on the Archer Inquiry various people either sent in, sometimes anonymously, or lent me what they had.  These were usually early bulletins and I was able to get an almost complete set scanned in.  I also made an effort to scan in anything else that seemed that it would be relevant, especially if it related to the actions of The Haemophilia Society as there was so little of that.  This was mainly Tanner/Watters exchanging letters with various parts of Government. I left all this material at The Haemophilia Society and scanned copied shared hard drive when I left.  Not long after Liz arrived I spoke to her on the phone and it was clear that quite a lot of the things that were supposed to be on the hard drive weren’t there anymore. I had some files on an old external hard drive which I returned to them but to be honest I don’t know what they have left to work with from their own records.  I’m sure the hard copies of the bulletins that I didn’t have to return to people will still be there somewhere as (sadly) they didn’t take up a lot of room and are obviously important to whoever packed them up at the last move.

 

In terms of who took or destroyed what I’m afraid I don’t have any names for you.  All I can tell you is there is much, much less there than most people think.  Nothing was destroyed in my time, if anything we were building the records back up.

 

I hope that helps,

Dan

The Chronicle Newcastle contacted a spokesperson at the Society who said, “we are not aware of documents that were destroyed on purpose but due to changes in staff and trustees there is not a complete record of what we have held. We do have an archive that, while not complete nor fully catalogued, includes letters, publications and minutes of meetings from the 70s and 80s.” It is unclear whether this information was from the old external hard drive that Dan returned to the Society.

There is also the issue of confidentiality and security, protection of personal information, documents and letters submitted by those infected with HIV and hepatitis C, a very vulnerable community who put their trust in this organization.

Meeting with Right Rev James Jones in London

Yesterday, contaminated blood campaigners went to London to meet the former Bishop of Liverpool to discuss a way forward for the Public Inquiry into Contaminated Blood finally announced by Theresa May after more than 30 years of cover-up. The Right Rev James Jones chaired the Hillsborough Inquiry and offered his support to Contaminated Blood families. …see article from ITV

https://www.itv.com/news/granada/update/2017-09-12/former-liverpool-bishop-to-meet-families-affected-by-contaminated-blood-products/

Carol Grayson (Haemophilia Action UK) Peter Mossman (Manor House Group) and Colette Wintle (Independent Campaigner for Women who Bleed) stand together in calling for a Hillsborough style Inquiry, with a panel and favour a human rights lawyer to oversee the process. The Department of Health must not dictate the remit or terms of reference for an Inquiry or oversee an Inquiry as it cannot investigate itself.

We express concern that

  1. So much evidence of historical value, vital for a Public Inquiry is allegedly destroyed/missing
  2. That long standing campaigners with the most evidence are being excluded from key meetings
  3. It is important that the role of the Haemophilia Society and the disappearance of documents (including Dept of Health) is fully investigated during the forthcoming Public Inquiry alongside the disappearance of government documents.

Lord Owen’s health files were also trashed

I received a phone call from Lord Owen (former Health) on Monday prior to an interview he was doing on Contaminated Blood, like me he has little hope that truth and justice will prevail though he thought there may be a little more financial support. To date the government has refused to give compensation, only providing paltry amounts where haemophiliacs and bereaved relatives must go begging to a Trust criticised by Lord Archer of Sandwell in the Archer report. This funding goes nowhere near to addressing the multiple losses experienced by haemophiliacs and bereaved relatives or their needs.

Owen put money aside in 1974 for the UK to become self-sufficient in blood products on the grounds of safety but unbeknown to him this was changed quietly without debate in parliament soon after he left office. He did his best to assist haemophiliacs in finding out what went wrong but then discovered that his own health files were also trashed.

Owen told the Guardian in 2002, “I have no wish to go to court, but I have no doubt whatsoever that if someone starts to take serious legal action, the government hasn’t got a leg to stand on.” He was also astonished that my research had been repeatedly ignored stating it was “still the best research on contaminated blood that I have read.” This begs the question, why did the British government chose to bury the dissertation when Anne Milton and DOH blood policy team made a commitment to address the findings?

Testing for HIV and hepatitis C without permission, withholding test results

On the same day as the meeting with Bishop James, an article was published by the Ham and High questioning whether haemophiliacs at a Camden hospital had been tested for HIV without their knowledge and permission. Although evidence at that particular hospital may be new to some, the issue itself is old with evidence submitted years ago to the General Medical Council, Archer Inquiry and Penrose Inquiry (Scotland).

Haemophilia Action UK repeatedly raised testing without permission for HIV and hepatitis C from 1994 and every year following. (The articles are that old some are not online only in hardcopy). Here is just one example regarding testing that remains online from 2003,

“Haemophiliacs “duped” into tests”

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2003/jan/21/medicineandhealth.publichealth

Testing for HIV/HCV without permission and withholding positive test results was raised in the media, with doctors, MPs, health authorities, official complaints to General Medical Council (GMC) with the Haemophilia Society, with the Dept of Health, with lawyers, with human rights organizations, with the Charities Commission, in my dissertation, Archer and Penrose Inquiry and in Europe. Test results were submitted with medical records to the GMC by a number of patients. I asked asked haemophiliacs in my dissertation questionnaire in 2006 about testing without consent and received answers confirming this was a common occurence. Some haemophiliacs went on to infect their wives when positive rest results were withheld. This was also reported in the Guardian (Feb, 2009) with regard to Haydn Lewis who has since died.

“Lewis started receiving commercial blood products in 1974 and in 1985 was told he had been infected with HIV.

“I knew from about 1984 that there was a risk I could be infected but they kept telling me there wasn’t a test available,” he said.

But in 2003 he gained access to his medical notes, which revealed that although he had tested positive for HIV in 1984, he was not informed until February 1985 – during which time, he believes, his wife was also infected with the virus. “How do you deal with that?'” he asked. “How do you cope knowing that you have given someone you love something that will kill them?”

Ham and High state in 2017, “the DoH said it was taking the accusations regarding HIV testing ‘very seriously’”…. What a joke, government have ignored testing without permission and withholding of positive test results both HIV and hepatitis C for over 20 years at least. 

A haematologist informed me years ago that staff were worried about too many false positive test results on haemophiliacs in the early days so tested out the HIV test on haemophiliacs as a patient group without asking permission or informing them and then retested telling them some time later. This happened again with HCV tests, haemophiliacs were often the guinea pigs for other patient groups as far as testing was concerned and  this was against the Nuremberg Code which we have raised time and time again.

I knew it was wrong to test without permission because I was involved in setting up the first guidelines for testing for HIV in the 1980s and later HCV in the 90s when I worked as a nurse and we could be disciplined, struck off for doing so without offering pre and post test counselling and giving patients their test results as a matter or urgency.

Haemophilia Society official apoplogy

The current staff at the Haemophilia Society have issued an official apology regarding past behaviour at the organization. Colette Wintle and I e-mailed and approached Jefferson Courtney on the issue providing new staff with a copy of my dissertation and some background history on the Society. We requested they put out a statement distancing new staff from past behaviour. Jeff  did e-mail us saying this had been agreed and acknowledging that he could not have done so without us (it is a steep learning curve for any new staff regarding a very complicated history). The apology can be seen below and here is an excerpt…

“Failures in government policy and negligence of public bodies led to people being infected
with blood borne viruses as a result of their treatment with blood products in the 70s and
80s.”

“The impact of these failures was worsened by poor communication from Government,
healthcare professionals, pharmaceuticals companies and The Haemophilia Society.
Warnings were not heeded and errors were subsequently hidden.”

See below for full statement,

http://haemophilia.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Board-Statement-on-Contaminated-Blood-March-2017-1.pdf

Sad to say the contact with the Haemophilia Society is somewhat frosty. They appear to prefer dealing mainly with the children of haemophiliacs, a new generation that are largely reliant on second-hand research and documents and don’t have same the lived experience as their parents. This is no doubt easier than facing often frustrated older activists that have researched blood contamination for decades and ask challenging questions.

It is no wonder then that with all this evidence, long term campaigners are being left out of key meetings with government as Diana Johnson MP proved in a recent question to Jackie-Doyle-Price, see following,

https://www.theyworkforyou.com/wrans/?id=2017-07-18.5925.h&s=Blood%20Contamination

You won’t see Haemophilia Action UK, Manor House Group or Colette Wintle on the list…. WHY? The reason is … we know too much!

What can be done in the short -term

Infected and affected should not have to wait another 6 years for an Inquiry report, that cost millions of pounds with a single recommendation as happened before. I have written to MPs and All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) members calling for Labour to apologize for Lord Warner’s misinformation and their own failure to implement Archer’s recommendations and to call for the Conservative government to put “compensation on a parity with Eire” into practice. Yes a Public Inquiry is important but haemophiliacs do not have time on their side, widows/widowers are also now in very poor health after years of caring and there is NOTHING to stop compensation being given now as it was in Eire on the grounds of “extraordinary suffering”.

Haemophiliacs were designated as a “special case” by Virginia Bottomley at the time on the 1991 HIV litigation which separated them from whole blood cases that were not. There were a number of distinct differences. Haemophiliacs were already considered to be disadvantaged due to their inherited condition. Often more than one family member had haemophilia so a family could have multiple persons infected at the same time putting extra stress on a family. Haemophiliacs were infected with multiple viruses such as HIV, hepatitis B, C (and years later exposed to v CJD) which complicated the medical picture and treatment in addition to having haemophilia. They were also reinfected with different genotypes. Haemophiliacs had also received plasma products from US prisons so another country was involved with legal representation in the UK and US. The legal cases were seen to be distinctly separate from whole blood cases as recognized by lawyers. For example whole blood cases could go under product liability, haemophilia cases could not. Whole blood cases did not involve treatment from US prisons with the gross safety violations and abuse of human rights associated with importation. Those given whole blood were infected in the UK during a window period before testing for hepatitis C became available, often a one off transfusion and were not infected with multiple viruses with several family members infected.

We know from recent legal opinions that the chances of haemophiliacs winning legal cases on the grounds of gross negligence particularly in relation to US treatment are very good. We now know they were good in 1991, unfortunately this information (seen only years later) was withheld from haemophiliacs and their families at that time. As one lawyer wrote the evening before haemophiliacs accepted an out of court settlement for HIV infection and signed what we now know from a legal opinion to be an allegedly illegal hepatitis waiver, “I can no longer lie to my clients.” The lying must stop, documents and evidence from all relevant organizations must be preserved and justice must be done!

Link

Contaminated blood scandal: Were vital records from the 1970s and 1980s destroyed?

http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/contaminated-blood-scandal-were-vital-13614220

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.

 

 

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Islamic Emirate: War crimes of brutal foreign invaders and their internal mercenary forces (August 2017)

Post via Islamic Emirate

On Saturday 5th August, five innocent civilians were martyred and injured in the indiscriminate shelling of internal stooge forces in ‘Saroza’ village of ‘Saroza’ district in ‘Paktika’ province.

On Monday 7th August, two civilian countrymen were relentlessly martyred by the internal mercenary forces in the outskirts of ‘Shindand’ district in ‘Herat’ province.

On Tuesday 8th August, a civilian countrymen was martyred and two more were injured during a raid of the savage foreign invaders in collaboration with their internal mercenary forces in ‘Mamli’ area of ‘Khogyani’ district in ‘Nangarhar’ province.

On Thursday 10th August, sixteen innocent civilians were martyred in the indiscriminate bombing of savage foreign invaders in ‘Paeen’ area of ‘Haska-Maina’ district of ‘Nangarhar’ province. ‘Saz Wali’, the governor of ‘Haska-Maina’ district confirmed the incident and added that a civilian vehicle carrying 8 passengers was targeted and hit, in addition to ordinary 8 way-farers, by brutal foreign invaders in an air raid, and all of them were martyred.

On Friday 11th August, twelve children and two women were martyred while three other civilians were injured in the random artillery shelling of internal stooge forces in ‘Torta-Ata’ area of ‘Dolat-Abad’ district in ‘Faryab’ province.

On Friday 11th August, civilian houses in ‘Momin Abad’ area of ‘Imam Sahib’ district in ‘Kunduz’ province were relentlessly bombed by the internal mercenary forces, in which, four civilians were martyred and injured.

On Friday 18th August, two children were martyred while their mother was injured in the indiscriminate mortar shelling of internal stooge forces in ‘Ganjgal’ area of ‘Sarkano’ district in ‘Konar’ province.

On Sunday 20th August, five innocent civilians, including children and women, were martyred and injured in an ambush of the internal stooge commando forces in the central bazaar of ‘Bala-Murghab’ district in ‘Badghis’ province.

On Sunday 20th August, civilian houses were raided by the brutal foreign invaders in collaboration of their internal mercenary forces in ‘Navaqulo’ area of ‘Bati-Kot’ district in ‘Nangarhar’ province, in which, significant amount of valuables were looted from the houses, and then, three innocent villagers were relentlessly martyred.

On Monday 21st August, a civilian (named ‘Mohammad’s/o ‘Ali’) was ruthlessly martyred by the notorious Arbaki militiamen in ‘Gore-Aghli’ area of ‘Shirin-Tagab’ district in ‘Fryab’ province.

On Monday 21st August, ‘Char-Darchiyan’ village in ‘Gore-Tapa’ area near the center of ‘Kunduz’ province was raided by the savage foreign invaders escorted by their internal mercenary forces. In this brutal raid, first the main gates of several houses were blasted; the local people were then badly beaten, while four innocent civilians were taken away as prisoners.

On Wednesday 23rd August, three civilian people were martyred and injured in the indiscriminate drone strike of the savage foreign invaders in ‘Janjai’ area of ‘Said Abad’ district in ‘Maidan Wardak’ province.

On Saturday 26th August, eleven civilian countrymen were ruthlessly martyred in the indiscriminate drone strike of the savage foreign invaders in ‘Nahr-i-Sofi’ area of ‘Char-Dara’ district in ‘Kunduz’ province.

On Sunday 27th August, civilian houses were raided by savage foreign invaders collaborated by their internal mercenary forces in the ‘Sajani’ area of ‘Char-Dara’ district in ‘Kunduz’ province. In this brutal raid, first the main entrances of several houses were blasted by bombs; the innocent people were severely beaten, and their valuables were looted. Eventually these houses were indiscriminately bombed, in which, a number of houses were destroyed, while five women and children were martyred and injured.

On Monday 28th August, a civilian (named ‘Haji Khuda Dad’) was martyred in the random shelling of internal amateurish soldiers in ‘Koka-Balaq’ area of ‘Eshkamish’ district in ‘Takhar’ province.

On Monday 28th August, forty innocent civilians, most of them women and children, were martyred in the ruthless bombing of the savage foreign invaders in ‘Bakht Abad’ area of ‘Shindand’ district in ‘Herat’ province. ‘Jilani Farhad’, the spokesman of governor of this province confirmed this tragedy to BBC by adding that mostly women and children were martyred in this untoward incident.

On Tuesday 29th August, a religious scholar (named ‘Moulavi Abdul Hakeem’) was ruthlessly martyred after the evening (second last) prayer of the day inside the mosque by the unrestrained Arbaki militiamen in ‘Khogyani’ district of ‘Nangarhar’ province.

On Tuesday 29th August, thirteen innocent civilians were martyred while seven more injured in the ruthless and indiscriminate bombing of savage foreign invaders in ‘Dasht-i-Bari’ area near the central city of ‘Logar’ province.

Sources: (BBC, Radio Liberty, The Afghan Islamic News Agency; Pazwak, Khabaryal, Larawbar, Nunn.Asia and Benawa websites.)

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.

 

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Islamic Emirate: First victims of Trump’s new strategy

Post via Islamic Emirate

Sept 7th 2017

In the newly announced strategy of American President Donald Trump, it has been further concentrated on even more killing and agony of innocent Afghan masses. This new strategy of the savage foreign invaders was instantly seconded by the puppet regime in Kabul, by holding meetings and conferences. On the other hand, this outrageous strategy of the brutal occupying forces was severely condemned by the freedom loving Afghan masses, peace loving independent organs and individuals, by marking it another wave of Afghan homicide and the demolition of their homes and towns.

In the very first week after the employment of this new strategy of devastation, hundreds of innocent civilian men, women and children were ruthlessly martyred and wounded in different parts of the country while their houses were demolished. Predominantly, in Kunduz, Herat and Logar provinces, colossal casualties and financial losses were inflicted on the civilian people.

In the indiscriminate bombing of savage foreign invaders, 13 civilian people were martyred and 7 others were wounded in ‘Dast-i-Bari’ area of ‘Logar’ province. After the approval of these terrible civilian losses, for the justification of their brutalities, the enemy claimed that their forces were initially attacked by Taliban in the area, and they opened fire in retaliation, which might have caused civilian losses. But the reality is that during this civilian homicide, neither there were Taliban, nor the enemy forces were attacked from any side.

In another tragic incident, 40 innocent people, mostly women and children, were martyred and wounded in an indiscriminate drone strike of the savage foreign invaders in ‘Bakht Abad’ area of ‘Shindand’ district in ‘Herat’ province, resulting in a huge calamity in the area, in which, numerous houses were demolished too. Hundreds of local people were occupied in burying their loved ones and shifting the wounded ones on the threshold of ‘Eid-al-Adha’, the holy Muslim celebrations in commemoration of the magnificent sacrifice of Prophet Ibraham (peace and blessings be upon him).

In a similar disastrous incident, houses of civilian people were raided by ruthless foreign invaders in collaboration with their internal mercenary forces in ‘Sajany’ area in the northern ‘Kunduz’ province. In this ruthless incident, initially main gates of several houses were blasted in bombs; the innocent people were then badly beaten, while their valuables were looted; and eventually, these civilian were indiscriminately bombed by the savage foreign invaders, in which, one woman was martyred, 2 women and 2 children were severely wounded, while five civilian houses were completely demolished.

This the initial souvenir!!! of newly approved American strategy (for the promotion of peace and stability in the region) which resulted in a human catastrophe. According to verified reports, the foreign invaders and their internal mercenaries are planning even more such homicidal air attacks.

On the other side, heroic Mujahidin of the Islamic Emirate are determined and resilient by sustaining their holy Jihad against all devious strategies and malignant plans of the brutal foreign occupying forces and their internal stooges to defend our creed, country and pious people. We have vowed to take the revenge of our innocent people from the brutal foreign invaders and their internal mercenary forces by inflicting severe casualties and mindboggling financial losses on them. It is obliged on us to safeguard and defend our religious sanctities and national interests, and to prolong our righteous struggle until and unless the last foreign invading soldier is withdrawn and the Islamic System of life is restored in our beloved homeland.

In-sha-Allah!!!

End

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.

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Islamic Emirate: Another Failed American Strategy

Post via Islamic Emirate

Sept 7th 2017

The US president at Fort Myer military base, Virginia, USA announced his strategy about Afghanistan on 21 August of the current year. It took almost six months for the new US Administration to formulate the new strategy but it still contains contradictions. From one side, they say that we will not tell the Afghans how to live and how to run their complex society, which is a positive point. But on the other hand, it practically emphasizes on the presence of invading troops and use of military approach. It is a hard fact now that the strategy of use of force and pressure has achieved no result during the past sixteen years. Once, the US and her allies had more than one hundred thousand troops in Afghanistan. They used all tactics and weapons against our Mujahid people but neither they resolved the issue of Afghanistan nor quashed the determination of our Muslim people aimed at achieving freedom and liberation. If America formulates similar strategies not once but tens of times while putting emphasize on use of force, it will not resolve the issue of Afghanistan until they accept the basic demands of the Muslim nation of Afghanistan i.e. end of occupation, independence of the country and establishment of a system based on their beliefs. To realize these objectives, the Islamic Emirate has always kept open political channel as well as continued its military activities. Therefore, if Americans are sincere about what they say, they should leave the Afghans to decide how to live and form a government.

It is to be mentioned that America has utterly failed in the process of nation building in Afghanistan. At the beginning, they were harping on slogans of freedom of speech, development and prosperity but practically, they imposed an unpopular group of warlords on the people under the slogan of democracy. As a result, people were further plunged into poverty, repression and insecurity. Neither, they developed agriculture nor industry rather a few unpopular figures gained billions of dollars due to corruption and embezzlement.

It shows that America has failed in all its slogans and promises in Afghanistan. Now, it is vital for them to consider ground realities in Afghanistan. As such, should accept the basic rights of the Afghans and seek to eradicate all those factors which have led the Afghan nation to rise against foreign occupation in the past one and a half decade with all their potentials. The issue of Afghanistan could neither be resolved with phony strategies nor has resulted into any tangible achievement in the past. However, if Afghan people obtain their legitimate rights, they assure their neighbors and the world that the land of Afghanistan will not be used against anyone rather we will establish good relations with them on the basis of our Islamic and national interests and mutual respect.

End

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.

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Crowdfunding Campaign Launched for Supreme Court Drones Case (Reprieve)

 

Faisal Bin Ali Jaber seeks justice for deaths of family members in a US drone strike (Image via Reprieve)

A crowdfunding campaign has launched today (Thursday) through CrowdJustice to raise funds for a Supreme Court challenge to President Trump’s drone programme in Yemen. The human rights organization Reprieve is asking for donations from members of the public to help get justice for Faisal Bin Ali Jaber, a Yemeni engineer whose brother-in-law, Salem, and nephew, Waleed, were killed in a 2012 US drone strike.

Salem and Waleed were both opponents of al Qaeda in Yemen. Salem was a local Imam who five days before he was killed had been preaching against the terrorist group and Waleed was a local policeman. Mr Jaber is seeking only an apology from the US government.

In June this year the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia said it did not have the authority to decide whether the drone strikes that killed the two were legal. However, in a concurring opinion, Judge Janice Rogers Brown attacked the system of accountability for lethal action taken by the President, stating “our democracy is broken” and “congressional oversight is a joke – and a bad one at that.”

A report by Reprieve into the drone programme in Yemen, launched alongside the CrowdJustice campaign, reveals a five-fold increase in the rate of drone strikes in Yemen since President Trump took office in January and evidence of civilians being recklessly killed.

Reprieve is now assisting Mr Jaber to take his case to the Supreme Court to ensure that the power of the President to take potentially lethal action against civilians is subject to proper checks and balances.

Shelby Sullivan-Bennis, an attorney at Reprieve US said: “Faisal is seeking justice for his innocent relatives, but this case is also about the accountability of the President to Congress and the people for lethal decisions he takes in their name. Judge Brown accurately labelled the current system of oversight ‘a joke’, but she felt her hands were tied. Now the country’s highest court should have the opportunity to ensure there are proper checks on the power of a President who has shown little regard for civilian life.”

End

Links

Reprieve website

https://www.reprieve.org.uk/topic/drones/

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.

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