New UK Mental Health Laws to enforced Detention and Medication
The House of Lords is carrying out a detailed consideration of proposals to introduce new mental health laws.
The new government bill would allow the enforced detention of people who are mentally ill, even if they have not committed any crime.
It also suggests strengthening powers established in 1983 to ensure patients have therapy once they are released back into the community.
Critics of the bill say it would fail to safeguard the rights of patients.
Health Minister Rosie Winterton said the bill would reflect changes to mental health services in recent years.
"We have made it very clear in the bill that appropriate treatment has to be available for detention to take place," she said.
Current laws do not allow people with severe personality disorders who have committed no offence to be detained.
The government wants to give the right to force patients who have been released into the community to take their medication, even if they do not want to.
It also wants to allow the detention of people with personality orders who are described as untreatable, even if they have not committed a crime.
Doctors and campaigners argue the bill erodes the rights of patients without making the public any safer.
An amendment to ensure a set of guiding principles protecting patients' rights was debated.
Broadcaster and writer Lord Bragg, who takes the Labour whip, said this was of "crucial importance."
He said: "People should retain as much autonomy as possible. People may have decision-making ability over many of the areas where decisions need to be made.
"It may be necessary for someone to receive treatment under compulsory powers, but they may have views and knowledge about which treatments have previously helped or harmed them."
He added: "People should be supported to make their own decisions where possible and given the same choices as people with physical health conditions."
The bill was promised in the Queen's Speech and comes after previous attempts to change the act were thwarted by opposition from campaigners and doctors.
The government published a draft Mental Health Bill in 2002, but dropped it last March.
Instead of replacing the old laws, the latest bill proposes amending the existing Mental Health Act from 1983.
Health Minister Lord Hunt said the proposed amendment was not appropriate in a bill that sought not to re-write the law completely but merely to amend the old act.
Conservative Lord Howe, who did not put his amendment to a vote, said: "I urge the government to be bold, to use this opportunity to put the legislation into a context of values and, in so doing, to make a real difference to mental health patients."
About 50 Labour MPs have already signalled their intention to oppose the bill, which would apply to England and Wales.
The changes would affect about 14,000 of the 600,000 people who use mental health services each year.
The desire to change the law was largely driven by Michael Stone's 1998 conviction for the murders of Lin and Megan Russell.
Article from: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/6239939.stm
Ed comment: Just wait until ”Anti-social Behavior” is classed as Mental Illness or merged with these new mental health laws. Conform to the norm or be detained and forced on medication. Coming soon to a new world order near you!
More: Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003
Queens’s 2006 speech, all about new government laws and legislation
Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003
Anti-social Behavior - homeoffice.gov.uk
Latest News from our Front Page
Pressure from the United Patriots Front Stops Mosque Plan
Pressure from the United Patriots Front appears to have killed off a mosque development in Narre Warren North.
The City of Casey council now looks likely to withhold planning approval for the development in a special meeting set for Tuesday night.
A council report, to be considered by councillors on Tuesday, recommends that the approval be blocked.
The mosque opponents’ cause has been helped by councillor ...
Police face questions over the influence of the Freemasons
South Yorkshire Police today face questions over whether powerful 'secret society' the Freemasons held sway over the force at the time of Hillsborough.
Families of victims say that officers who were Masons were promoted into powerful positions despite being ill-equipped, including match commander David Duckenfield.
Duckenfield told the fresh inquests he had been a Freemason since 1975 and became head of his ...
England Bans its Own Flag to Avoid Offending Muslims
St. George's Cross "racist" towards immigrants
Government officials said their city was ‘too multicultural’ to celebrate St George’s Day, England’s version of the 4th of July.
The council said that displaying the English flag may have been seen as “racist” towards immigrants.
Half of Western European men descended from one Bronze Age ‘king’
Half of Western European men are descended from one Bronze Age ‘king’ who sired a dynasty of elite nobles which spread throughout Europe, a new study has shown.
The monarch, who lived around 4,000 years ago, is likely to have been one of the earliest chieftains to take power in the continent.
He was part of a new order which emerged in ...
"Local Residents" Are Filmed Stealing Dozens of Bottles of Water at London Marathon Stop
Editor's Comment: "Local" residents? Why bother blurring their faces? We know who they are.
London marathon runners were robbed of dozens of bottled waters when thieves raided a refreshment area armed with trolleys during today's race.
Nearby residents - including parents with children - were captured on camera piling up crates of free water handed out by volunteers during the 26-mile event.
|More News » |