Imagine if you are subject to isolation with a closed door even if you have not committed any offence. It would bring shivers down your spine, but the story of Ashley Peacock is one which would bring tears to anyone’s eyes. Being autistic might be a curse for him as in the past year he has spent less than 50 hours outside. Although he has not committed any crime, yet the 33 years old is forced to spend his days in a cell like room with just a mattress on the floor.
He has been termed as a compulsory treatment patient under the care of Capital & Coast District Health Board. He is being treated for autism, post-traumatic stress disorder, a mild intellectual disability and mental health problems. His parents, David and Marlena Peacock, who live in Gisborne, often visit their son in Porirua's Regional Rehabilitation Unit, Tawhirimatea. They are just helpless at his situation and can’t do much, but be a spectator to the horrific life that their son is living. According to his father David, “He is an outdoors person, that is his only joy, but it's been denied him. He has bad eyesight and won't read and he doesn't like television. He thinks he's in prison and he doesn't understand why".
His parents have feared for their son’s wellbeing for a long time after he was ordered to be taken under institutionalized care in 2006. The physical and mental health of Ashley has been on a decline ever since and has rapidly worsened in the past year. Now measures are being taken to make sure that proper care is being given and the parents have also hired an human rights lawyer in that matter. The parents are of view that their son, should not be kept under so horrific situation.