As the Care Quality Commission (CQC) continues to release its inspection reports on learning disability hospitals and care homes - and continues to find the majority do not meet essential standards - more uncomfortable questions are raised for the entire residential sector. Of the 20 reports the CQC published, only 4 facilities were found to be fully compliant with the 2 essential standards on which the inspectors focused  - the care and welfare of people who use services, and safeguarding people who use services from abuse. So, only a fifth fully comply with the baseline standards required by law. A fifth. One in five. Worryingly, it is becoming increasingly clear that these are not isolated cases. About 60 reports - on a mix of NHS and independently-run facilities - have now been published, out of the CQC's planned programme of 150. So far the majority do not fully comply with these basic standards. While no more Winterbourne Views have been unearthed, and most of the CQC's concerns are described as 'minor', it nevertheless shows that people living in learning disability residential hospitals and care homes often receive sub-standard care. Indeed, as the CQC admitted earlier in February, many facilities seem to lack person-centred care - one of the central tenets of the personalisation agenda. All this raises a host of questions: why are so many establishments sub-standard? How has this been allowed to happen? Why has the regulator not flagged this up before? Why do commissioners place people in such facilities? Perhaps most pertinently: why does no-one seem to have put the interests and wellbeing of the people with learning disabilities who live these places first? If this was any other part of the care sector, it would be a national scandal in the media. And so it should be - such common poor practice is unacceptable and the public need to know about it. Perhaps the national newspapers are waiting for the full CQC report on all 150 inspections due in the spring. Nevertheless, it is becoming increasingly clear that there are major problems with the residential model of care, and it is something that everyone involved - from frontline care staff to service commissioners to the Government - needs to address. Some, such as learning disability charities Mencap and The Challenging Behaviour Foundation, have said these reports provide justification for moving even further away from institutional care towards smaller-scale local services, and it is hard to argue with them. The evidence base that shows community-based care provides better outcomes for people with learning disabilities is substantial. But while local services are the goal, residential facilities remain and need urgent reform. Whether it is more and better training for frontline care staff; or commissioners no longer placing people with learning disabilities, out of their local area, and in assessment and treatment centres that seem to neither assess or treat - to name but two specific issues that have to be  addressed - the whole sector needs swift, overall action. This must be driven by central Government, whether through guidelines, targets or a new strategy; and has to feature action at every level from the regulator, through commissioners, providers, managers and frontline staff. Only this kind of concerted action can ensure that standards are improved, not just to the essential level, but way beyond. When the CQC publishes its final report, the Government must take decisive action to address this quiet scandal. Making the necessary changes will take time and money but they cannot be deferred.  At the heart of all this are people with learning disabilities who have a right to live a good life - just as anyone else does - and this must never be forgotten.