Wednesday 25 April 2018

'The day I am diagnosed with dementia is the day I book my ticket to Dignitas' - Katie Hopkins causes Twitter controversy

Katie Hopkins
Katie Hopkins

Laura Donnelly

Controversial reality TV star Katie Hopkins has been accused of making "disgraceful" and "ill-informed" remarks about dementia patients by leading charities.

The columnist and pundit is well-known for her outspoken and provocative comments,the latest of which have outraged campaigners for the elderly.

Writing on Twitter, she suggested those diagnosed with dementia were "blocking beds" and were better off dead.

 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."

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."

 The comments by Miss Hopkins made over the weekend provoked disgust from followers, some of whom called the remarks about the condition "abysmal".

In January she criticised people who "dial the cop shop every time we feel offended online" after she was reported to police over her Twitter outburst about the Scottish nurse who is battling ebola.

Hopkins said "the freedom to say only things that are polite is no real freedom of speech at all", in her Sun newspaper column on Friday.

Hopkins was berated online after she wrote on the site about "little sweaty jocks", adding: "Sending us ebola bombs in the form of sweaty Glaswegians just isn't cricket."

Responding to the latest criticism, Hopkins told MailOnline: "It is high time the UK caught up with civilised nations and adopted voluntary euthanasia in order that people may die with the same dignity we accord to much loved pets."

The reality TV contestant, who came to fame in The Apprentice, has dubbed herself "the biggest bitch in Britain".

Her outspoken remarks, on television and twitter have seen her regularly cause outrage.

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