We have come a long way in terms of awareness and support, but Mental Health matters continue to have a stigma and an air of uncertainty overshadowing them. For example, a 2016 survey by Time to Change Wales revealed that 1 in 10 people believe that people with mental health illnesses can never fully recover, and 1 in 7 believed that people with mental health problems should not be allowed to hold public office. People still have reservations about speaking openly and honestly about their personal mental health experiences and challenges.
In a bid to raise awareness, the CJCH Solicitors mental health department have shared insight into some of the information we believe people should be aware of when it comes to mental health law.
We asked Craig Mills, a solicitor in the mental health law department to answer a few important questions:
What the aim of mental health law is?
The Mental Health Act protects the rights of people with mental health challenges, not only when someone is detained in hospital but also when someone is being treated for their ailments within the community under the Act. People should only be admitted to hospital against their wishes when it is essential to their health and safety or the protection of others.
What should people be aware of when it comes to matters relating to mental health?
Personal rights are an important thing for people to be aware of. There has been a lot of mental health advocacy recently and people need to be aware that it can affect individuals in a number of different ways (Read a recent article in BBC News on South Wales Police wanting mental health lessons for youths). It can sometimes be difficult to identify when/if people are suffering from mental health problems, but it is important that everyone is aware that help is available. There are a number of mental health charities that can provide support.
Here are some links to assist with finding the right support for you or your loved ones:
- NHS, Health in Wales: Mental Health
- Mental Health Support
- Mental Health Foundation
- Mind – for better mental health
For an example of how these matters are impacting people in Wales, you can read this recent article about three people’s personal struggle with mental illness which was shared for World Mental Health day.
For more information or assistance with a mental health legal issue, contact our team via email: firstname.lastname@example.org ; to telephone: 0333 231 6405.