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Mental health laws exist in many countries to regulate the involuntary detention and treatment of individuals with serious mental illnesses.
'Rights-based legalism' is a term used to describe mental health laws that refer to the rights of individuals with mental illnesses somewhere in their provisions. The advent of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities makes it timely to rethink the way in which the rights of individuals to autonomy and liberty are balanced against state interests in protecting individuals from harm to self or others.
This collection addresses some of the current issues and problems arising from rights-based mental health laws.
The chapters have been grouped in five parts as follows: