Increased focus on human rights in mental health care in Scotland

The Mental Welfare Commission and the Scottish Human Rights Commission have published a report which aims to improve recognition of people’s human rights when receiving mental health care in Scotland.

Increasing the focus on human rights is a core commitment of the Scottish Government Mental Health Strategy, 2012 – 2015. The report, Human Rights In Mental Health Care In Scotland, was delivered to the Scottish Government by both Commissions at an event held in late 2015..

The report highlights key activities that 17 key organisations and services are now undertaking to progress the human rights agenda, and identifies challenges and opportunities for the future in realising people’s human rights.

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Using rights and recovery to achieve transformational change in mental health

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This is a critical time for mental health in Scotland. In the current climate of austerity, funding crises and shrinking services, people affected by mental health problems find it increasingly difficult to get the right kind of support when they require it.

The problems are well-known. There are serious shortcomings in the provision of accessible, acceptable, quality care and support through the life course: key elements of the right to the highest attainable standard of health. People’s right to a decent standard of living is negatively affected by the lack of joined-up and integrated thinking, which results in support systems based on silo mentalities and the interests of different sectors and services rather than the views and goals of people and communities.

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