N.S. woman’s move to adult facility required ministerial approval, inquiry told

A human rights board of inquiry heard more testimony Monday about the difficult life of Beth MacLean.

MacLean, who has an intellectual disability, was first housed in a locked unit at an institution when she was 14.

Her move into the unit at the Kings Regional Rehabilitation Centre in Waterville, N.S., in 1986 required ministerial approval because it was an adult facility. She later spent 16 years living in a locked unit of the Nova Scotia hospital.

“It was very inappropriate to be put in an environment where people are much older,” said Jim Fagan, director of resident services at the Regional Residential Services Society.

Fagan is the latest to offer testimony at the Nova Scotia human rights board of inquiry.

Lawyers for MacLean and two other complainants allege the province is violating their basic human rights by forcing them to live in institutionalized care instead a smaller, community-based support home.   

In his testimony Monday, Fagan said MacLean was assessed in 2014 to determine whether it was appropriate to move her out of the Nova Scotia Hospital’s Emerald Hall into a community-based support home.

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