In the UK, 1 in 4 people experience a mental health problem each year. These can range from anxiety and depression, to schizophrenia.
Human rights and mental health
The Convention on Human Rights confers people with important protections which public organisations such as healthcare providers are guided by. Under Article 2, for example, the state must act when life is endangered. Rabone and another v. Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, 2012, is an example of how human rights can be used to ensure people with mental illnesses are treated with the right kind of care. The Supreme Court found that the hospital had failed to take reasonable steps to protect the life of a high risk young woman who hanged herself after being discharged.
Other Articles which have been deployed ot protect people with mental health problems include: Article 3 which protects against inhuman and degrading treatment; Article 5 which provides the right to liberty; Artcle 8 which confers the right to family and private life and Article 14 which prohibits discrimination.
Mental health and the workplace
The new ‘In Your Corner’ campaign from Time to Change (working to end mental health discrimination) shows the simple ways anyone can be there for someone with a mental health problem. The video below can be used in the workplace to encourage employees to be in their colleague’s corner when it comes to mental health.
According to Time to Change, having a colleague, friend or family member in your corner can make all the difference to someone experiencing a mental health problem.