Today in World Mental Health Day – and it provides us in Ireland with a lot to think about in terms of the way in which mental health services are provided and how our mental health laws are constituted. The key policy document on mental health is entitled “A Vision for Change” and the Expert Group on Mental Health Policy, which was established to monitor its implementation have been very critical to date in their five annual reports on the lack of progress in implementation. See here. In its most recent report it was critical of the absence of a recovery ethos within mental health services. This is a major challenge that has to be addressed as principles of recovery are at the core of the philosophy underpinning “A Vision for Change”. While there is much to be dismayed about we are at an important crossroads in Ireland in relation to our mental health laws. The Department of Health is in the process of reviewing of the Mental Health Act 2001, while the Department of Justice is similarily reviewing the Criminal Law (Insanity) Act 2006. This provides a significant opportunity to rethink our mental health laws in light of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), which the Government is working towards Continue reading “World Mental Health Day”
We have hosted several posts detailing the judgment in A, B & C v. Ireland and setting out its implications for Irish law. Labour in its manifesto (p 79) had promised to legislate for the X case. Fine Gael in its manifesto (at p. 24) had proposed establishing an all-party committee to consider the implications of the European Court judgment and to make recommendations. In its Programme for Government, the Fine Gael and Labour coalition states:
We acknowledge the recent ruling of the European Court of Human Rights subsequent to the established ruling of the Irish Supreme Court on the X-case. We will establish an expert group to address this issue, drawing on appropriate medical and legal expertise with a view to making recommendations to Government on how this matter should be properly addressed.