CALL TO ACTION
Campaign to Support CRPD Absolute Prohibition of Forced Treatment and Involuntary Commitment
Action: Coordinated blog posts launched on 29 March 2016, opening day of Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 15th session
Participants: Survivors, service (ex-)users, allies, researchers, lawyers, academics, service providers, journalists, concerned citizens of the world….
Content: Write from your heart and mind about any aspect of the absolute prohibition and why it is needed: the harm done by forced drugging; solidarity and building an inclusive society where all people are equal; the legal implications of the CRPD internationally and for domestic law; reception of the CRPD by other human rights mechanisms; potential of absolute prohibition to transform services and supports for people with psychosocial disabilities as we desire them to be; relationship of pathologizing diagnoses to forced treatment and commitment, etc. Don’t limit yourself to these examples; what’s important is to have many voices from many perspectives expressing the value and necessity of the absolute prohibition.
Reference: Link your argument or statement to CRPD (especially Articles 12, 14, 15, 17, 19, 25(d), 28), General Comment No. 1 on Article 12, and/or Guidelines on Article 14, and express your support for the CRPD Committee’s approach, which can be summed up as a paradigm shift from procedural safeguards (outdated paradigm in mental health laws) to absolute prohibition (new paradigm in CRPD).
Context: The CRPD poses a serious challenge to the status quo of law and the power of organized psychiatry. Two UN treaty bodies have come out into open conflict with the text and authoritative interpretation of the CRPD: the Human Rights Committee (which monitors the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights) in their General Comment No. 35 (para 19); and the Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (which conducts visits to places of detention and supervises national prevention mechanisms which do the same) in their document “Rights [sic] of persons institutionalized and medically treated without informed consent”. The SPT’s position is the most stark, not only allowing commitment and forced treatment but saying that abolition would violate the right to health and the right to be free from torture and other ill-treatment. In other words they are endorsing the “right to treatment” argument put forward by organized psychiatry. As we know this argument depends on negating the capacity and right of people with psychosocial disabilities to make our own decisions and defend our bodily autonomy, which is guaranteed by CRPD Article 12. Bodily autonomy is fundamental to personhood and to safety, which are both aspects of human rights and necessary conditions for living well.
Contact: Tina Minkowitz firstname.lastname@example.org
Methodology for Campaign of Support for CRPD Absolute Prohibition
If you have an individual blog that you will use to make your post, please provide the name and url and a summary of the content by March 14.
If you do not have access to a blog but want to participate, please contact me and I will do my best to connect you with one or more participating collective blog sites.
If you have a collective blog site, whether organizational, grass roots, academic, journalism, etc., and you would like to open it up to guest bloggers for this campaign, please let me know as soon as possible.
You are also welcome to share the Call to Action and this note on Methodology on your blog or website, and on social media; please make sure to include my contact information.
Contact: Tina Minkowitz, email@example.com
Center for the Human Rights of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry, www.chrusp.org