The Road to Dispatches – a guest post by Amy Eastwood-Grimes


I came across #rightfullives in May 2022 originally through Facebook. Aside from the continuous incredible support and advice it was lovely to find new friends and become familiar with people who share the same or similar struggles aswell as heartbreaking to see that so many people could relate or I could relate to them. And to hear the stories. Despite all, rightful lives brings us all together as one big united front all fighting the system together and supporting one another through it. I’m so glad I came across this group and wished I found these incredible people sooner. The work the admin team do is also incredible. If you have seen my posts in the group and supported me then you may also know and have probably seen the latest dispatches episode on Channel 4,

LOCKED AWAY: Our Autism Scandal!

If not and you either want to educate yourself on the ongoing crisis autistic individuals like myself are going through with the broken mental health system it would be great insight to do so, Or just to feel less alone, along with the plenty of other documentries I recommend that are similar to this matter. This is an ongoing problem and has been for too long now. Things aren’t moving as they should have or at all really with healthcare and although buried deep and covered up, these asylums are real. It happens more than you know, everyday. Right now there’s thousands of people out there who are silenced or aren’t able to say what’s happening to them. The numbers are only rising Amongst us who spoke out in the documentary We are just a handful of individuals and the documentary shows only a snippet into our lives as autistic inpatients trapped in a far broken system crambed into a 30 minute episode.

I’m don’t regret taking part and will continue to fight against the system for all and our life beyond breightmet (ASC Healthcare), littlewood, Cheadle and the thousands of other inadequate hospitals out there both abusing and neglecting autistic people all over the country in all kinds of ways possible.

But I would just like to thank Julie Newcome and the rightful lives team & everyone participated in the groups. Because without Julie, who actually was the one who put me forward to the director Richard & his team, I would still remain silenced and most likely stuck at breightmet centre in Bolton, so in a way you all saved me and I will forever be greatful and show my gratitude. I cannot thank you all enough! 

I also encourage others that if you can find the time and courage to do so, please do speak out if you can because like I said at the end of the film “if we don’t speak out no one will hear us and we remain silenced”.

Please make sure to follow Rightful lives on Twitter for their continuous great work that they do and to keep up to date with it all. And I recommend joining the Facebook group too for the best support and to know some of the bravest, kindest people & families who will no doubtly have experienced something similar and offer you great support with whatever you are going through! Joining rightful lives was the first time I felt listened to and less alone in what has been the worst & most challenging experience of my life. I will never forget all of which was there for me during this time. And if you want to keep up to date with my individual story I post alot on: 

Tiktok & Instagram @amyjayeastwoodgrimes

Twitter: @EastwoodGrimes. Also the lovely Katy who was too unwell to take part in the show Twitter: @Katy_Lauren Tiktok: @Katy_Laurenhx 

You can also follow Lauren’s Mummy on Instagram: @misslindseyj & Tiktok: @laurensmummy

 Lauren is girl who also featured in dispatches last Friday. Who sadly lost her life in the system in May 2022. Her Mum in on a battle to courageously continue to fight the system in the name of her daughter who sadly lost her fight but inspired many including myself by bravely sharing her journey. Like her equally as incredible mum fighting the system helping many others in a similar situation.

And please do sign her petition for change and use the hashtags #LollysLaw #LiveForLauren 

And last of all my thoughts are with the others who took part on the film Shaun, Danielle and her Mum, Lauren and her family! Along with my incredible friend who also did filming who spoke out about Breightmet who can’t go unmentioned in this article for her bravery and strength your incredible too. My thoughts are also with all the other warriors who we’ve lost, and all effected and their families. But like I said this goes beyond us, However We are all warriors and We have to keep fighting and supporting one another until we are satisfied. So to whoever is reading this please don’t give up, you will never be alone. Your amazing and don’t let them them make you feel otherwise. We hear you loudly, You’ve got this, We’ve got this!

Many thanks Amy Jay Eastwood.

ps (thank you for the out-pour of support that everyone has shown me this past few days since the film came out, you have all restored my faith in humanity and that there are so many kind people in this world amongst those not so much. So thanks for everything, and thanks to all my friends, family, my idols Jedward who are my heroes that I am lucky enough to have known for most of my life who inspire me, make me smile at the worst of times, and always have my back all the way, you’re super Jepic. And to my incredible mum who taught me to speak out and how to use my voice, I’ve learned that sometimes your voice is all you have in most situations, though I’m aware & have seen so many people are silenced or unable to say what’s happening to them, so I am greatful I can use my voice and make myself heard not just for myself but for everyone of us who can’t speak out. And I promise this is just the start from me). all I want is to make change and for everyone to be free and not have to go through what so many have, things need to change. Please keep sharing your story and remember this is just apart of it…

#Dispatches #Channel4 #OurAutismScandal #ActuallyAutistic #RightfulLives