Today, 27 February 2017, is Mental Capacity Action Day. This is the second annual day of action being marked by the National Mental Capacity Forum.

This year’s theme is 'supporting decision making', which is key to the work we do at the British Institute of Human Rights to support public services and advocacy groups to put human rights at the heart of their practice. Sadly, the stories of people with mental capacity issues who are failed by services, or whose voices are so rarely heard, are all too familiar. This Mental Capacity Action Day we at BIHR want to share some real life stories on how the Human Rights Act is supporting people to have their voices heard, and empowering mental capacity practitioners to made good rights-respecting decisions: 

  1. Lisa Clevely, a Senior Dementia Practitioner and one of our project leads at Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service shares how our human rights approach has helped staff to reflect on their values, forget their own agendas and to put people with dementia at the centre of decisions about themselves.
  1. Myan Warrell, a Multi Specialist Advocate at our advocacy service partner n-compass, shares her personal reflection of using human rights to support her client through a safeguarding investigation.
  1. Ged Carney, a former Community Learning Disability Nurse (now at Autism Initiatives) and previously one of our project leads at an NHS service reflects on the changes in practice over the last 30 years and how human rights has helped him to support people with learning disabilities to be heard.

Finally, there are lots of real life stories of change to read, share and be inspired by the practical guidance in our two new sets of resources developed with Lisa, Myan, Ged and many other practitioners on our projects who we support to use the Human Rights Act to achieve positive outcomes every day:

                                     

                                                         

You can also check out our blog here, sharing the value of a human rights approach from our two projects supporting both service providers and advocates, and the people they support.