Sheila the Baroness Hollins

“Home comes in many different shapes and sizes but whoever we are and wherever we live, we need our home to be the place where we feel safest. That’s not always possible for reasons of finance or family turmoil or because a disabled person is deemed too needy to be supported at home. My life’s work has revolved around trying to implement the principles  of the Ordinary Life movement for people with learning disabilities,  that each person is entitled to an ordinary Life in an ordinary house in an ordinary street with the support that they may need to be able to live safely and fully. Such support must include home making- a skill rarely found amongst the repertoire of direct support staff/ carers who are working in the community.”

Professor Sheila the Baroness Hollins is an independent crossbench life peer in the House of Lords, and Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry of Disability at St George’s University of London. She has been a clinical specialist, researcher and policy maker in mental health and published both scientific and professional papers and books. In 1989 she founded the long running Books Beyond Words series of picture books for young people and adults with developmental intellectual disabilities, which includes stories about everyday life such as moving home, as well as physical and mental health, and criminal justice. Baroness Hollins was President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (2005-2008), President of the British Medical Association (2012-2013) and Chair of the Board of Science of the British Medical Association (2013- 2016). She has completed a 4 year term as a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors and Vulnerable Adults in 2017, and is currently President of the Royal College of Occupational Therapists.