U.N. Rapporteur on Torture Calls for Ban on Forced Treatment
In a statement to a session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 4, the U.N. Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment of Punishment called for a ban on forced psychiatric interventions including forced drugging, shock, psychosurgery, restraint and seclusion, and for repeal of laws that allow compulsory mental health treatment and deprivation of liberty based on disability, including when it is motivated by “protection of the person or others.”
A small sample from the publication can be read below:
The CRPD offers
the most comprehensive set of standards on the rights of persons with disabilities and it is important that States review the anti-torture framework in relation to persons with disabilities in line with the CRPD. States should impose an absolute ban on all forced and non-consensual medical interventions against persons with disabilities, including the non-consensual administration of psychosurgery, electroshock and mind-altering drugs, for both long and short-term application. The obligation to endforced psychiatric interventions based on grounds of disability is of immediate application and scarce financial resources cannot justify postponement of its implementation.
Forced treatment and commitment should be replaced by services in the community that meet needs expressed by persons with disabilities and respect the autonomy, choices, dignity and privacy of the person concerned. States must revise the legal provisions that allow detention on mental health grounds or in mental health facilities and any coercive
interventions or treatments in the mental health setting without the free and informed consent by the person concerned.
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By : Mr. Juan E Méndez
SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR ON TORTURE AND OTHER
CRUEL, INHUMAN OR DEGRADING TREATMENT OR