I'm A Celeb star Ruthie Henshall heartbroken as her mum dies after spending last months in lockdown in care home

I'M A Celeb star Ruthie Henshall paid tribute to her mother Gloria on Instagram today as she announced her beloved mother had passed away aged 87.

Ruthie said she has been left devastated after her dementia-stricken mum died following months of isolation in her care home during lockdown.

The West End star, 54, had been fighting for families to be able to see their loved ones in care homes during the coronavirus pandemic and said that her mother had rapidly deteriorated over the last year, while she has had limited contact with her other children.

In a post on Instagram, she shared a heartwarming photo of her mother, and wrote: "Gloria 07/05/1933-11/05/2021

"My beautiful mummy Gloria passed away very peacefully early this morning. I managed to care for her for a few short weeks. It was my honour and my privilege.

"If the government had made their guidance law my sisters would have seen her more than a couple of times before losing her. Even recently my sister Susan was doing window visits because she wasn’t able to get an indoor visit for 3 weeks. Spring lodge, the care home my mother was in followed the guidance but still there are care home providers and managers that are not. It remains a postcode lottery.

"My sister Susan is angry and devastated that she only got 2 indoor visits before my Mother died. This was completely and totally unnecessary. Utterly inhumane to these beautiful residents who are not really living much of a life. Still socially distanced as much as possible during the day and unable to have anything like meaningful visits with loved ones.
This to me is a crime being committed.

"Without the guidance being law some care home providers are allowing an abuse of residents' human rights to meaningful contact with their loved ones."

Ruthie had been allowed to see her mother daily because she had fought to be assigned as an "essential caregiver".

Just last week the West End star delivered a petition to the government asking to give all willing relatives of care home residents essential caregiver status by law, which would allow them to visit their loved ones in the case of another Covid outbreak.

The actress slammed the Government for separating residents from their families in lockdown, as she added in her post today: "I was Gloria's essential caregiver for her last weeks. I read to her, sang to her, cuddled her, fed her, massaged her hands and feet, and told her I loved her at least 20 times a visit.

"Each time I hugged her she moaned with delight. That’s all she had left was touch. She couldn’t walk, talk or eat solid food. Just one essential caregiver by law to every resident would give unlimited joy, love and peace of mind and take a huge strain off the brilliant carers who get paid mostly minimum wage.

"Shame on every government official and care home provider that decided to ignore residents' human rights and just Baton down the hatches. you kept out love and hope. I am devastated.

"I hope it was worth the cost to keep them behind locked doors? #gloriaslaw #gloriahenshall #rightsforresidents"

Back in February Ruthie tearfully said she was "watching my mother die through a window" on Loose Women – before she was given caregiver status and allowed inside to assist with her mum's care.

Ruthie said in a matter of months her mum lost the ability to walk, talk and is struggling to eat.

Ruthie added: "I can't work out what the government are saying half the time. In years to come we will look back on this, on all people in care homes who can't see loved ones, that have gone down hill, and will think 'how did we let this happen?"

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