Submission to Independent Review of Compulsory Treatment Criteria and Alignment of Decision-Making Laws
22 June 2023
The Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System recommended that action be taken to reduce the prevalence of people being subjected to compulsory mental health treatment.
To assist in implementing this, the Victorian Government established a panel to inquire into the compulsory assessment criteria and associated processes. Foundation House, the Victorian Refugee Health Network and Victorian Transcultural Mental Health, made a joint submission asking the panel to consider strengthening the processes which might reduce the likelihood of orders being made.
This could be achieved by amending the Mental Health and Wellbeing Act (under which orders are made) to provide that when someone is subject to a mental health assessment order (a step preceding a compulsory treatment order being made) the non-legal mental health advocacy service provider, which supports people at risk of being compulsorily treated, be notified.
The submission also requests the panel to reiterate the critical importance of Government and the Department of Health adopting an integrated and comprehensive strategy to ensure that, apart from potential new legal provisions, the use of compulsory treatment is reduced overall and that it is not imposed inequitably on groups of people in the community, as happens at present.
The submission can be accessed here: Compulsory assessment treatment criteria alignment of laws [PDF download]