Dementia charity criticises Hopkins
Published 07/04/2015 | 15:41
Controversial columnist Katie Hopkins has been accused of making "disgraceful" and "ill-informed" remarks about dementia patients by a leading charity.
The reality TV star is well-known for her outspoken and provocative comments, with some of her latest tweets referring to dementia sufferers "blocking beds".
"Dementia sufferers should not be blocking beds. What is the point of life when you no longer know you are living it? Bang me over the head," she wrote on Twitter.
"The day I am diagnosed with dementia is the day I book my ticket to Dignitas.
"Ultimately, if your family member is in hospital with dementia because you are not caring for them - you have no right to be outraged."
George McNamara, head of policy and public affairs at Alzheimer's Society, said: "These disgraceful remarks only serve to reinforce the stigma that sadly prevents many people with dementia from feeling like valued members of society.
"Ill-informed comments such as these go against all that we know about dementia. People with the condition tell us that with the right support it is entirely possible to live well and take real enjoyment out of daily life.
"The 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK deserve far more than to be used as bait by people stoking controversy."
Last week Hopkins, who writes for the Sun, was accused of behaving in "a dangerously provocative way" after she suggested Pakistani men in the Rochdale area were sex abusers.
Hilary Evans, director of external affairs at Alzheimer's Research UK, said: "Katie Hopkins should be ashamed at her comments.
"Views such as these reinforce misunderstanding of dementia and show just how much work there is still to do in changing harmful perceptions of the condition.
"People who have been diagnosed with dementia still face an unacceptable level of stigma and social isolation as a result of their condition, and we need much greater awareness about the reality of life with dementia.
"All too often dementia is talked about in negative terms, and we must challenge the feeling of hopelessness that surrounds the condition."