The purpose of this paper is to consider three recent papers relating to human rights and applicable to adults or children given mental health diagnoses.
The first paper discussed how to measure progress in different countries in their policy changes to abide by the UN Convention on rights of persons with disabilities, and discussed how all relevant groups could be involved. The second paper considered the problem of children’s rights being eroded by overuse of the mental health diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) when they are restless. The third paper reported on an evaluation of how well advocacy services are enabling people who are sectioned to have a say in their care.
When assessing how well countries are doing in ensuring the rights of people with disabilities, the first paper’s authors concluded that all groups must participate in the evaluation, even though there are many different agendas. The second paper reported on how professionals and parents could come to a shared understanding of how children might be wrongly given a diagnosis of ADHD and jointly suggested some solutions. The third paper illustrated how important advocacy is, and the difference it can make to the lives of people who are sectioned.
The first paper’s authors are engaged in ground-breaking research to assess whether disabled people’s rights under the UN Convention are being honoured. The second paper raised vital questions about the misuse of diagnosis, contravening the UN Convention on the rights of the child, and illustrated how parents and professionals can come together in support of these rights. The third paper reported on the first systematic national study on the implementation of advocacy services to defend the rights of people who are sectioned to have a say in their care.
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