Joe shared this story at the Lived Experience Roundtable that BIHR and Liberty held with the Independent Human Rights Act Review Panel. You can read more about this here.

About Joe

Joe is the Chief Executive of 'All Wales People First' the united voice of self-advocacy groups and people with learning disabilities in Wales. Joe takes his direction from the All Wales People First National Council (elected members) and the Board of Directors. Joe is also a Trustee of BIHR. Joe is the Chief Executive of 'All Wales People First' the united voice of self-advocacy groups and people with learning disabilities in Wales. Joe has learning disabilities and has both personal and professional experience of what happens when people’s rights are not respected.

How Joe uses the Human Rights Act:

Joe and members of All Wales People First use the HRA to challenge services and create positive change in people’s lives. For example, Joe and a member of All Wales People First used the HRA to challenge the isolation policies of a supported living unit which did not respect the right to liberty (Article 5) or the right to private life (Article 8).

In Joe’s own words:

 “After attending a BIHR training session, myself and a member of All Wales People First used the HRA to challenge a Local Authority. The member was living in supported living run by the Local Authority, any time they left the supporting living unit, staff told them that they would have to isolate in their room.

 BIHR supported us to challenge by raising that this was a restriction of the right to liberty (Article 5) and the right to private life (Article 8). We raised that this was not a lawful, legitimate or proportionate restriction of this right. Although this issue had been going on for a while, it was resolved the day after raising the legal duty under the HRA.”

I want to be clear that the barriers faced by people with learning disabilities have always been there, this stuff isn’t new, but the Human Rights Act is a positive framework to challenge some of these barriers.”

 

In this video, from our Human Rights Day event in 2020, Joe talks more about the importance of the Human Rights Act.