Review of Sections 135 and 136 of the Mental Health Act: the views of professionals, service users and carers on the codes of practice and legislation

Centre for Mental Health
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Reports on the main findings of 27 focus group events held across England and Wales to find out about people's views on detention under Sections 135 and 136 of the Mental Health Act. Both professionals and managers and service users (and carers) who had directly experienced being detained, or knew of someone being detained, under these parts of the Act were included in the focus groups. The events aimed collect positive and negative experiences of S135 and S136 and what people would like to see changed. The review found that for many people being detained by the police was a frightening experience. The use of Section 135 powers in a person's home was especially traumatic for those who had experienced it. Both professionals and service users and carers agreed that police custody should seldom, if ever, be used and that humane treatment should be part of the sectioning process. A difference in views existed regarding the extension of section 136 powers to a private place, with service users against the extension. The report concludes that the use of police powers under the Mental Health Act has to change. (Edited publisher abstract)

Subject terms:
user views, carers, mental health law, severe mental health problems, compulsory detention, focus groups, assessment, approved mental health professionals, interagency cooperation;
Content type:
research review
England, Wales
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