Young autistic man who lay dead for nine months was deemed no longer in need of help by social services' boss in Milton Keynes

The vulnerable autistic man who lay dead in his flat for nine months was dismissed by social services as no longer in need of “social or health interventions” the year before he hanged himself.

By Sally Murrer
Thursday, 12th September 2019, 5:42 pm

Documents obtained by the Citizen include an email from adult social services chief Victoria Collins about 28-year-old Ayman Habayeb.

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It states: “We have carried out a formal capacity assessment which has confirmed his capacity...there are no indicators at present to suggest that he needs any social care or health interventions at this time.”

The email was written in June 2017 to the office of MP Mark Lancaster, who was dealing with complaints about social services from Ayman's worried parents.

Seventeen months later, in November 2018, the young man hanged himself in a cupboard in his Ashland flat.

Ayman with mum

His body was not discovered until August this year when housing association staff turned up to evict him for unpaid rent.

Neighbours claim they had reported concerns about his absence to the authorities, but they were not followed up.

Ayman, who had a history of depression and mental ill health, had stated during an early assessment that he did not want contact with his parents after social services helped him move into his own flat six years ago.

Ms Collins email states: “Ayman... has stipulated that he that he does not want any information to be shared and has decided to live his life independently of his family. He has capacity and has made a choice.”

Ayman and mum

Mum Annabela and dad Fuad, who live on Stantonbury, dispute their son didn't have the mental capacity to make this decision and battled continuously to be allowed to help him.

It is understood Ayman's placement was classed for the first few years as supported living, which meant he received regular care visits. But this stopped in February 2017, when he was deemed as capable of living independently.

“He was not capable,” said his dad this week. “When we went through documents gathered from his flat after his death it is apparent he was in debt and struggling to cope alone. We believe that was the reason he took his own life.”

Fuad and Annabela were not even allowed to know where their son was living, and desperate Annabela even set up a Facebook page appealing for any snippet of information to help her trace him.


Fuad said: “We had a good and loving relationship with him before he moved out. It broke our hearts that social services would not let us see him. If we'd known he was having problems we would have done everything possible to help him.... We believe he was failed by the system.”

Annabela enlisted the help of the MP's office and exchanged a series of emails with Mark Lancaster's assistant Richard Gates.

In one email she wrote: “We just want to know our son is ok and safe and that the social care is complying with their duties. Our son has family and friends that love and care for him and we know its not his fault for his actions...It is his condition.

Mr Gates contact Ms Collins. Her reply in the June 2017 email states Annabela should be informed that her son “wishes to maintain his privacy.”

Today Mr Gates said: “This case is very sad indeed.”

A serious case review is now to be held into Ayman's death by the Milton Keynes Safeguarding team.

MK Council leader Pete Marland said: "We have referred this case to a multi-agency review as a number of agencies, such as the NHS, were involved.

He added: "It appears to be a very complex and sad case. However it is only right that his loved ones are given answers as to what happened and that all the facts are established. I am confident the review will be thorough.

"The fact is a man has died. What I want to find out is could any more have been done to prevent it, and if so, what may be the issues that need to be addressed?"