Equality and Human Rights Commission announce inquiry into the deprivation of liberty safeguards

The Equality and Human Rights Commission have announced that they will be opening an inquiry into the deprivation of liberty safeguards. The announcement is contained within their Corporate Plan for 2013-14 (hat tip to Local Government Lawyer for spotting this), and states:

The Commission is developing proposals for a formal Section 16 Inquiry to examine policy and practice in care homes and hospitals on the deprivation of liberty of people who lack mental capacity, and the effectiveness of the safeguards currently in use. This issue has been explored with various organisations and individuals, including the Care Quality Commission, Court of Protection Users Groups, Mind, Liberty, barristers and leading academics. Stakeholders have identified some significant problems and flaws in the application of the current safeguard provisions. All have stressed the need for systemic change to ensure that the human rights of people in extremely vulnerable situations are effectively protected.

I haven’t seen any further detail on the specifics of this inquiry, but I will keep an eagle eye on their website.

So, now we have a House of Lords ad hoc committee conducting post-legislative scrutiny of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 because of human rights concerns, and the EHRC conducting an inquiry into the deprivation of liberty safeguards. Interesting times.

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