Declaration Text

PEOPLE AFFECTED BY MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES* HAVE THE FOLLOWING RIGHTS:

1. The right to be treated with dignity and respect and be free from discrimination on any grounds. These include mental health status, age, disability, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, religious belief, social or other status.

2. The right to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health. This includes timely access to a range of quality care and treatment, without discrimination.

3. The right to free, meaningful and active participation in decisions at all levels, using coproduction as standard and independent support if required. This includes participating in decisions about:

  • The development and implementation of laws, policies and budgets.
  • The design and delivery of services and support. including health and social care, welfare, education, employment and housing.
  • Care, treatment and support, with free, prior and informed consent given to any interventions.

4. The right to information that is provided in a clear and accessible format, tailored to the requirements of each person. This includes information about rights.

5. The right to hold duty bearers to account, provide feedback with impunity and access to justice when rights are infringed.

6. The right to independent advocacy, both individual and collective.

7. The right to equal treatment and recognition by the law and to its equal protection and benefit.

8. The right to enjoy the full range of economic, social, cultural, civil and political rights. In the context of mental health this includes a particular emphasis on:

  • Participation in community and society on an equal basis.
  • A good standard of living and legal and social protection.
  • Access to lifelong education and learning opportunities.
  • Employment and work opportunities.
  • Liberty, privacy and the right to a family life.
  • Security of the person and the right to be free from torture and abuse.

* By this we mean people with experience of mental health issues and those family and friends who care for them.

Download the Rights for Life Declaration