Validity Foundation - Mental Disability Advocacy Centre

Category: My Home, My Choice

Under this campaign, we call for recognition of equal citizenship of people with mental disabilities, including their right to make decisions about their own lives. Too often, people with mental disabilities are labelled as “incompetent” or are denied the right to decide by punitive guardianship systems. They may be denied the right to vote, to marry, to manage their own money, and even to decide where to live. Instead of systems based on restriction and control, we push governments to provide support to people to make their own decision – so that they can be the authors of their own lives.

Zambia High Court Calls for Review of Mental Health Law

Lusaka Zambia – On 17 November, Zambian disability activists from the Mental Health Users Network of Zambia (MHUNZA) and Disability Rights Watch (DRW) held a press conference on the outcome of decision of the Zambian High Court concerning the constitutionality of the 1949 Mental Disorders Act. In a Petition brought by three… Read More

Innovating European lawyers to advance the rights of children with disabilities

Children with mental disabilities, including those with intellectual and psycho-social (mental health) disabilities are perhaps one of the most marginalised groups in the European Union, frequently overlooked by policy-makers, lawyers, judges and broader society. Through research, Validity (formerly MDAC) and our partners have found that children with disabilities experience multiple… Read More

Preventing Child Abuse in Institutions

Robert Martin, CRPD Committee Member, talks institutionalistion, ill-treatment and human rights. Earlier this month, Validity (formerly MDAC) published a first-of-its-kind monitoring methodology for identifying and preventing abuse of children with mental disabilities in institutions – the CHARM Toolkit. The Toolkit was the product of a two-year, EC-funded project carried out… Read More

The legislation has prompted protests in Hungary. Photo: hvg.hu

Hungary: Statement on the NGO Law

Validity (formerly MDAC) expresses its unequivocal opposition to legislation passed this month in Hungary which undermines the rule of law, freedom of association and respect for fundamental rights of independent non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in this country. The law, which directly affects Validity and many other human rights organisations operating… Read More

Straightjackets and Seclusion

Straightjackets and Seclusion

Validity (formerly MDAC) is today calling for the immediate closure of state-run institutions for people with disabilities in Hungary after an investigation of one large scale institution discovered children and adults who had been tortured and abused, including being tied to beds and restrained with makeshift straitjackets. One three-year-old was… Read More

A tribute to Rusi Stanev

We would like to share a few words on hearing the news that our dear client, collaborator, friend and hero Rusi Stanev has died, at the age of 61. Our hearts go out to people whose lives were touched by Rusi, to the Bulgarian disability rights movement, and to our… Read More

Zambia Must Close Abusive Institutions, says UN Expert

Ms. Catalina Devandas, UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Disabilities has welcomed greater respect for the rights of people with disabilities in Zambia since 2010, but says the country must go further and abolish abusive practices against people with mental disabilities. In her report to the UN Human… Read More

Duped, detained and drugged

Today, the European Court of Human Rights found that 55-year-old Jaroslav Červenka from the Czech Republic was deceived and wrongfully held in a social care institution for eight months (judgment here). Validity (formerly MDAC) calls on the Government to prohibit disability-based incarceration, and to evacuate the more than… Read More