Mental Health Cop

A particular dislike of mine is something I call the “Policy as Law” fallacy:  the pushing forward of a particular organisation’s policies or preferences, as a legal explanation for action or inaction in a way that suits them.  There are various examples in the police and mental health arena, some of them by the police:

  • “This hospital is not a place of safety” – that’s fine, but s135(6) says that hospitals are places of safety – whether you are ‘designated’ is quite a different matter, and even then, not a trump card for laws.
  • “AMHPs have no power to use force to detain and convey someone when they’re sectioned” – that’s fine, but s6 MHA says otherwise.
  • “Nurses can’t stop someone from leaving a place of safety if the police have already left.” – perhaps you’d like to take legal advice about s136(2)?
  • “Police officers can’t transport a mental health…

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