In democratic societies the awareness and knowledge in the field of human rights shouldn’t be optional but a must be. Even so, the observance of human rights is still a pending subject in the developed societies, especially when it comes to people with disabilities the ones most vulnerable to have their rights violated.
There is a strong interrelation between STIGMA, human rights and improvement of the health and social care, which makes crucial to consider them jointly. The discrimination and violation of the rights of people suffering from mental disorders are often driven by stigma which, for its part, is fueled by myths and misconceptions regarding mental illness. Social and health professionals, in their condition of humans, are not immune to stigmatizing beliefs and thus, are sometimes influenced by these. There’s no doubt that the relationship between a person that receives care and a person that provides the assistance is asymmetric and hierarchical , the first is placed in a situation of dependency on the second. This situation can be compensated only by fulfillment of the rights of patients and users to information and to participation in decision making.
When it comes to vulnerable groups, such as people with mental disability, the mere contemplation of human rights principles in our countries’ legislation doesn’t itself assure their observance in context of patients with disability. What does assure it, is having well informed, trained and sensitized professionals that put human rights in practice. That is why it is essential that the professionals and whole organizations undergo a quality training in human rights applied specifically to their working context with persons disabled due to mental illness.
The Be Right project seeks to meet this need by creating high quality training materials in human rights of People with mental illness applied to the context of care setting, directed at health and social service professionals. “