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Introduction: the European Convention on Human Rights and Mental Disability

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Chapter Summary

Mental disability has come of age as a subject of concern under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Between 2000 and 2004, there were over 40 judgments of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) relating to mental disability or to detention in psychiatric and related facilities. In some areas, such as the law relating to detention of individuals with mental health difficulties, it is possible now to speak of a jurisprudence of the Court. The European Court has in recent years made considerable progress in the protection of the rights of people with mental disabilities, and as the core of the book shows, there is potential for a good deal more. This introductory chapter also outlines the content available in other chapters of the book.

Keywords: ECtHR; European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR); mental disability

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