What Human Rights do for Disability - RightsInfo

What Human Rights do for Disability

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Disability
2002
Europe

The UK can ban assisted suicide

Related European Convention Articles

A woman who suffered from motor neurone disease complained that the ban on assisted suicide breached her human rights. The court said it didn't breach her right to private life because the ban was not disproportionate.

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Disability
2010
UK

The law now protects disabled people in many areas

Related European Convention Articles

The Equality Act outlaws discrimination on grounds of disability, age, sex, race, religion and other characteristics, at work and when receiving services. It brought together all existing anti-discrimination law.

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Disability
2013
UK

The social care system must be fair to disabled people

Related European Convention Articles

Getting employment and support allowance required a questionnaire and usually a face-to-face interview. This was causing major problems for people with mental health problems. The court said the system was unlawfully discriminating against them.

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    Disability
    2005
    Europe

    Detention for mental health patients must be reviewed quickly

    Related European Convention Articles

    A woman was detained in hospital for over a year after the Mental Health Review Tribunal directed her conditional release. Her right to liberty entitled her to have the lawfulness of that detention determined by a court promptly.

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      Disability
      2003
      Europe

      People with mental illness must be able to challenge their detention

      Related European Convention Articles

      A detained man with an untreatable mental illness was refused discharge. His right to challenge the lawfulness of his detention was breached by delayed review and making him prove he should no longer be detained.

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        Disability
        2001
        Europe

        A wheelchair is not an acceptable sleeping arrangement in custody

        Related European Convention Articles

        A woman had been detained by police for contempt of court. She had to sleep in her wheelchair as there weren't enough beds. The Court found that this, the dangerously cold conditions, and not being able to go to the toilet without male assistance, was degrading treatment.

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          Disability
          1975
          UK

          Sterilisation is considered the deprivation of a basic human right

          Related European Convention Articles

          This case was about the wardship of an 11 year old girl with mental health problems. The court said sterilisation was the deprivation of a basic human right and it would, if for non-therapeutic reasons without consent, be a violation of that right.

          Disability
          2014
          Europe

          The withdrawal of night-time care breached Mrs McDonald’s human rights

          Related European Convention Articles

          A woman with severely limited mobility complained that the withdrawal of night-time care breached with her right to respect for her private life. For a limited period, her right to respect for her private and family life was breached.

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          TOP 50
          50 Cases
          2002
          UK

          Councils must provide adequate housing for disabled people

          Related European Convention Articles

          A severely disabled, incontient and wheelchair bound woman and her family of eight were housed inadequately. Their local council failed to rehouse. The High Court decided this showed a ‘singular lack of respect’ for her private and family life and awarded damages.

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            TOP 50
            50 Cases
            2014
            UK

            Assisting suicide is still a crime, but watch this space

            Related European Convention Articles

            Two profoundley disabled men wanted help in ending their lives, which would be a crime. They were unsuccessful, but the court said that the criminal offence could breach the right to respect for private life. The Human Rights Act doesn't let courts override Parliament but, unusually, they did ask Parliament to reconsider.

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            Disability
            2012
            Europe

            Mrs Reynolds got compensation after her son died in psychiatric care

            Related European Convention Articles

            A mother complained that she had no access to compensation for the grief and distress caused by the untimely death of her son whilst he was in psychiatric care. She was awarded damages for violation of the right to a remedy and the right to life.

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              Disability
              2004
              UK

              Disabled people must be able to access public transport too

              Related European Convention Articles

              A wheelchair user wanted a train company to pay for a taxi to assist his train travel. The court said as long as it was reasonably practicable, disabled people should be given equivalent access to public transport.

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                Disability
                2009
                UK

                There’s protection for vulnerable adults mistreated in hospitals

                Related European Convention Articles

                A patient with cerebral palsy was forbidden from eating and was fed through a tube in his stomach, against his wishes. A campaign group used human rights to persuade a hospital panel to agree to his wishes.

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                Disability
                2012
                UK

                The High Court can always protect vulnerable adults when needed

                Related European Convention Articles

                A local authority wanted to protect two elderly adults. The Court of Appeal confirmed that the High Court can still interfere in cases to protect the vulnerable, even if they are also covered by mental health laws.

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                Disability
                2013
                UK

                A woman with Down’s Syndrome wasn’t force sterilised

                Related European Convention Articles

                A local authority wanted a court to let doctors sterilise a woman with Down’s Syndrome. The court focused on her best interests and said the decision had to be the 'least restrictive' of a person’s rights and freedom of action. It wouldn't allow the sterilisation.

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                  Disability
                  2004
                  UK

                  Disabled people are treated equally at work (even if it needs more effort from employers)

                  Related European Convention Articles

                  A woman became virtually unable to walk and was dismissed from her job for incapacity. The court said reasonable adjustments must be made to cater for disabled people, even if that means treating the disabled person more favourably than a non-disabled person.

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                    Disability
                    2012
                    UK

                    Detaining immigrants with mental health problems can be degrading treatment

                    Related European Convention Articles

                    A man with a mental health disorder was detained in immigration removal centres for months, despite worsening mental health problems. The delay in getting him to a hospital was unlawful, and constituted degrading treatment.

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                    Disability
                    2013
                    UK

                    Removing financial help for disabled people was unlawful

                    Related European Convention Articles

                    People receiving funding from the Independent Living Fund argued the its closure breached equality laws. The court agreed. There was no evidence that the government paid proper attention to the potentially grave impact on the disabled.

                    TOP 50
                    50 Cases
                    2012
                    UK

                    Steven Neary was unlawfully detained in care

                    Related European Convention Articles

                    Steven Neary lived at home with his father. He had autism and learning disabilities. The council removed him for a year. His wishes should have been listened to and the council should have involved his father from the start. His human right to family life was breached.

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                    TOP 50
                    50 Cases
                    2002
                    Europe

                    Criminalising assisted suicide doesn’t breach human rights

                    Related European Convention Articles

                    A woman with motor neurone disease said the ban on assisted suicide breached her human rights.The Court didn't doubt the firmness of her belief, but the state must protect right to life. There was risk of abuse in the system if assisted suicide was legalised.

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                    Disability
                    2015
                    UK

                    A family can receive damages if a council messes up care proceedings

                    Related European Convention Articles

                    The Council removed a 15 day old baby from its mother and put it into care. There were unnecessary delays and confusion over the plan for the baby's permanent home. It was finally placed with the mother's parents in Latvia aged 22 months.

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                    TOP 50
                    50 Cases
                    2004
                    Europe

                    Mental health detention needs proper safeguards

                    Related European Convention Articles

                    A man was admitted to a psychiatric hospital. He was was there informally, so wasn't protected by legal safeguards. This meant it was difficult for his family to get him home. This violated his right to liberty. The UK government responded by plugging the gap with a new law.

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                      TOP 50
                      50 Cases
                      UK
                      2001

                      You can’t be detained without medical proof of why

                      Related European Convention Articles

                      If you’re detained by the state because you are mentally ill, the reason for your detention must be regularly reviewed. It wasn't for detained mental health patients to demonstrate why they should be released - the treating clinicians should have to justify continuing detention. The law was later changed.

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                        Disability
                        2011
                        UK

                        You can’t shut a library without considering impact on disabled people

                        Related European Convention Articles

                        Individuals, including a man with a learning disability, challenged changes to councils’ library services. Equality duties had been breached by the councils’ failures to consider the potential impact on the disabled

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                        What Human Rights do for Disability
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