242211 Human Rights for Health Governance: The CRPD in Concept, Structure, and Substance

Monday, October 31, 2011: 10:30 AM

Lance Gable, JD, MPH , Wayne State University Law School, Detroit, MI
The complex relationship between mental health and human rights continues to evolve across theory and practice. Recent developments have deepened and challenged this linkage. Human rights have primarily been viewed as a foundation for individual protections for persons with mental and intellectual disabilities. Human rights can, however, also be seen as informing systemic approaches to governing social norms and health norms.

Human rights simultaneously inhabit three levels of interaction with mental health: conceptual, structural, and substantive. At the conceptual level, human rights can provide a philosophical orientation toward how society regards persons with mental and intellectual disabilities. At the structural level, human rights systems, through their many components, create a framework to advance legal claims and other initiatives to respect, protect, and fulfill human rights. At the substantive level, human rights underpin a set of normative prescriptions grounded in the language of rights, their interpretation, and their application. Taken together, these levels situate human rights as a shaper of health and social systems in the context of mental and intellectual disabilities. Thus, the human rights model can be conceived of as a model of health governance.

This presentation will articulate a theory of using human rights as an explicit model for health governance in the context of mental and intellectual disabilities. The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities provides a salient and timely example of how practical advancements in this area bolster and complicate the notion of using the human rights model as a tool of governance.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related public policy
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
1. Discuss the relationship between mental health and human rights. 2. Describe the legal changes and opportunities created by the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Keywords: Law, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I did the research on this paper and wrote it. I am an expert in this field.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

See more of: Human rights for global justice
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