A Court of Protection decision about sterilising a woman with a learning disability has been adjourned until May: Mencap
Tuesday 15 February 2011
Mark Goldring, Mencap's chief executive, said:
"We are encouraged to see that the court is giving this sensitive case the proper consideration that it deserves and that it has been adjourned until more evidence can be provided.
"We support thousands of parents and carers of people with a learning disability so we understand the many pressures they can face in their day to day lives. Today's case has highlighted some serious issues, not least the challenges faced by the young woman's family.
"The Court of Protection and the Mental Capacity Act are there to protect the rights of people who lack the capacity to make some decisions for themselves. Unless there are clear medical grounds it is an invasion of someone's basic rights to enforce sterilisation and it is unacceptable if other methods of contraception are possible. We will be watching this case closely and await the outcome in May."
For more information please contact Jenny Brannan on 0207 696 6017 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notes to editors
- About Mencap
There are 1.5 million people with a learning disability in the UK. Mencap fights on their behalf, and on behalf of their carers and families, to change laws and improve services and access to education, employment and leisure facilities, supporting thousands of people with a learning disability to live their lives the way they want.
We are also the largest service provider of services, information and advice for people with a learning disability across England, Northern Ireland and Wales. See http://www.mencap.org.uk/ for more information.
- About learning disability
A learning disability is caused by the way the brain develops before, during or shortly after birth. It is always lifelong and affects someone's intellectual and social development. It used to be called mental handicap but this term is outdated and offensive. Learning disability is NOT a mental illness. The term learning difficulty is often incorrectly used interchangeably with learning disability.