Why Mental Health Laws Contravene the CRPD – An Application of Article 14 with Implications for the Obligations of States Parties

9 Pages Posted: 16 Sep 2011  

Tina Minkowitz

Center for the Human Rights of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry

Date Written: September 16, 2011

Abstract

This statement argues that all laws authorizing detention and/or compulsory treatment on grounds linked to the existence of a psychosocial disability contravene the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The argument focuses on Article 14, since the majority of such laws depend on the power of incarceration to impose compulsory treatment (with community treatment orders being a recent innovation that depends on the threat of incarceration to enforce compliance). Other provisions of the CRPD and related international law standards are also invoked as needed. This statement further argues that unequal detention regimes for people with psychosocial disabilities as part of the penal system violate Article 14 and other provisions. Conclusions are provided regarding the obligations of States Parties to the CRPD.

Keywords: Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, CRPD, Article 14, mental health law, psychiatric incarceration, compulsory treatment

Suggested Citation

Minkowitz, Tina, Why Mental Health Laws Contravene the CRPD – An Application of Article 14 with Implications for the Obligations of States Parties (September 16, 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1928600 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1928600

Tina Minkowitz (Contact Author)

Center for the Human Rights of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry ( email )

44 Palmer Pond Rd.
Chestertown, NY 12817
United States

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