Advocacy Issues:

There are a multitude of reasons for becoming a proactive advocate of mental health rights and issues. Just a few of them follow:

  • To ensure adequate and responsive services within the community.
  • To guarantee legal protection from abuse by institutions and psychiatric workers.
  • To educate and help fellow consumers get the services they need to live well.
  • To see that the stigma of mental illness is forever banished from the public sector.
  • To improve employment opportunities for the mentally ill.
  • To assure adequate accommodation for those who suffer a mental illness.
  • To see that those with a mental illness always have a say in their treatment.
  • To guarantee no person suffers improper restraint and detention.
  • To ensure no person is forcibly treated, such as with ECT.

These are just some of the concerns with which an advocate may be involved in at some level. Advocates can be either consumers of mental health services themselves or someone who is deeply concerned that a loved one be properly cared for and have access to the best possible services. Whatever level of interest you may have regarding these issues, there is a place and a way in which you can be helpful and vital in securing mental health rights for all. Remember, the person you help may well be yourself one day as one in five persons find they must access mental health services at some time in their life. To learn more, and for many resources that may help you in your public or private endeavours, please read through this section and check out the extensive links. Perhaps you may wish to join us as a personal advocate for someone or even to join a national consumer advocacy organization. Most countries have several that address the very real issues that face the mental health consumer around the world. There is a deep satisfaction in knowing your efforts have made a difference in other's lives, so come on, give it a won't be sorry you did. Below are the navigational links to get you started on the road to pro-activity.