MHC finds human rights breaches in unregulated 24-Hour supervised homes still an issue24 July 2019
In a recent report, MHC outline a series of human rights breaches for residents of unregulated 24-hour supervised homes which means that more than 1,200 people with severe mental illness are still at risk of abuse. Many have severe and complex mental health problems.
This report on 54 of Ireland’s 118 24-hour supervised residences for people with mental illness highlights that minimal progress has been made to address the most basic of human rights some of the country’s most vulnerable people over the past 14 years.
MHC again emphasis the need for these residences to be regulated to protect the residents and reduce the risk of abuse. Regulation would allow for enforced changes where deficits and risks are found, and to ensure we protect the human rights of these residences and provide the right care and treatment in accordance with best practice standards.
The Inspector of Mental Health Services, Dr. Susan Finnerty, said: “The human rights breaches relate to a number of areas. These include the right to privacy; the right to a clean, well-maintained accommodation; the rights of service users to choose where they would like to live; the right to independent living with appropriate supports; and the right to access appropriate care and treatment through access to rehabilitation and recovery services.”
Key findings of the MHC 2018 report:
57 per cent of residences offered all residents single room accommodation and one residence had four-person bedrooms
In residences with shared rooms, 91 per cent had no privacy between beds or within the bedrooms
Only 46 per cent of residences were in good physical condition and 19 per cent required urgent maintenance and refurbishment
A rehabilitation team provided services for 61 per cent of residences. In these residences, it was more likely that the residents would have a multidisciplinary care plan in which they had involvement
There was no access to a kitchen to make tea, coffee or snacks in 33 per cent of residences
Residents were unable to lock their bedroom doors in 88 per cent of residences
Dr. Susan Finnerty, also added: “The residents of these homes are a vulnerable group of people who are at risk of abuse and yet the provision of their care and accommodation is not regulated. This is a serious deficiency, leading to the risk of abuse and substandard living conditions and treatment. Despite the Mental Health Commission highlighting the lack of regulation for many years, this has not been addressed and it remains a critical risk for residents.
To read our full statement, click here.
To read the report itself, click here.