Autistic woman, 23, 'pimped out' by carers to strangers as part of an experiment so she could "learn from her mistakes"
The woman's family accused care authorities of allowing an 'experiment' that resulted in the 'pimping out of a highly vulnerable young woman' and condemned the scheme altogether
According to a news report, an autistic woman was allowed to be "pimped out" to strangers by her caretakers so she could "learn from her mistakes" after her condition meant she sought risky sex. A Manchester court approved a two-month trial for the 23-year-old during which men would visit her care home for sex during daylight hours.
However, the scheme was concluded after a psychiatrist told the judge that continually exposing the woman, who has learning difficulties, to high-risk situations, could eventually lead to "sexual abuse, violence, injury or death." Documents pertaining to the peculiar case were released to Andrew Norfolk of The Times after a court order.
That said, the embattled woman's family accused care authorities of allowing an "experiment" that resulted in the "pimping out of a highly vulnerable young woman" and condemned the scheme altogether. Ever since the woman turned 18 in 2013, she has been in care under the direction of the Court of Protection, whose primary role is to safeguard adults who do not have the mental ability to take care of themselves.
The woman, it seems reportedly had a troubled childhood and ran away from home ten times in five years, may have "been subjected to sexual activity with men, particularly Asian men" as a child, according to court papers submitted by the council.
A judge in 2015 had said that the woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, was capable of exercising consent but was unable to "make decisions on her contact with men." Her caretakers also feared that if she was allowed unsupervised access to males, she was at risk of sexual harm. Manchester City Council then employed an organization named Engage Support with due permission from the court to give her 24-hour support and supervision.
According to court documents, the woman began making a series of risky attempts to have sex with strangers a year ago. However, Engage Support threatened to terminate its contract unless the autistic woman was given more freedom to make her own choices, per The Times. A psychologist with the firm thought it would be "in her best interests" to give her "unsupervised contact with men".
Out of concerns that such a move would expose her to sexual harm, the council opposed the plan, but Judge Jonathan Butler ultimately gave the go-ahead in June. Engage Support were allowed to leave the woman alone at the home "to have sexual relations with others during daytime hours [10 am to 4 pm]".
Furthermore, if the woman asked strangers for sex in public, carers were not expected to physically intervene, but should "remain present", the documents stated. After the June ruling, she slept with six men over the next few weeks and within two months the scheme was ended. Engage Support decided to end the visits in August out of concerns "about the woman's sexual behavior as well as the welfare of its staff." As the woman is now taken care of by a new provider, the case has been moved to the High Court, Daily Mail reports.