• Lords above 26 November 2018 | View comments

  • 26th November 2018 | By David Jolley

    Having been outraged by DoLS and despairing that, as I had looked away, Government had drafted amendments to the Mental Capacity Act which lost so much of the good which the Law Society had advised in its report on the revision of DoLS (Blog October 29th), I am now encouraged to optimism as the House of Lords is succeeding in achieving a rescue act:



    Challenges and amendments originating from peers of all parties have seen limits placed on the role of care home managers, require that every person at risk of deprivation must be consulted with in the assessment procedure, and young people in the age range 16-17 are now to be included.

    The roles for Approved Mental capacity Professional have been increased.

    Emphasising a focus on the individual who lacks capacity, wording is to be altered to declare that the purpose of Liberty Protection Safeguards is to prevent harm to the cared for person. Arrangements must be proportionate to achieve this for the individual.

    The terminology ‘of unsound mind’ is to be replaced by ‘Mental Disorder’. I know that many professionals will be pleased with this. My understanding has been that ‘unsound mind’ is a term widely used, understood and accept in other European countries. I suspect the same is true for many ordinary people in this country.

    Overall though, it is wonderful to know that this immensely important legislation is being given such careful and effective attention. Confined to the shadows of minor pages by the press, with the glare of spotlight incessantly beamed on negotiations and responses relating to Brexit, the enduring significance of this work in the House of Lords is of the highest order.

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