International Journal of Legal Ethical and Regulatory Issues

Mental Health Law: Discrimination or Cure?Mental Health Law: Discrimination or Cure?

*Gunjan Sharma
Department Of Accident And Emergency Medicine, Pilton Quayside Barnstaple, Devon, United Kingdom

*Corresponding Author:
Gunjan Sharma
Department Of Accident And Emergency Medicine, Pilton Quayside Barnstaple, Devon, United Kingdom
Email:gunjan.sharma@nhs.net

Published on: 2019-04-09

Abstract

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) is a milestone in international human rights. It has raised the voices of those with disabilities and raised awareness of discriminatory practices across the world. One such example is the United Kingdom. The UK has rejected the CRPD and its call for equality and continues to detain individuals on the basis of their disability through the Mental Health Act (1983). This has resulted in the discrimination of those with mental illness living in England & Wales which continues to this day. This short commentary introduces the CRPD and its importance in the context of international human rights. It then discusses the impact of the CRPD–namely Article 14–on current British legislation, the response of the British government and the subsequent discrimination which those with mental health problems suffer as a result. Finally, the article offers a possible solution to this current issue in the form of Fusion Legislation and offers a brief analysis of its underlying concepts. The aim of the commentary is to educate the reader and raise awareness of current discriminatory practices which continue in the developed world. It also hopes to stimulate a discussion about human rights issues which society still faces in this day and age and the battle that awaits us.

Keywords

Human rights; Mental health law; Discrimination; Deprivation of Liberty; United Nations; Capacity

Introduction

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) is a landmark for international human rights. It has received acclaim from the international community [1] and is described as one of the most powerful international human rights proposals to date [2]. The CRPD represents the long battle of human rights to represent individuals with disabilities. It is a response to some of the horrific treatments that people with disabilities have had to endure from their own government [1]; it is a pity that the British Government has responded to its introduction in such a weak manner [3]. This article will look at the current non-compliance of the Mental Health Act (1983) in England & Wales with one section of the CRPD-Article 14- and the subsequent discrimination that people with mental illness face in Britain today.