Disability charities have welcomed the new Disability
Discrimination Act but are disappointed at its lack of provision
for those with a history of depression.
A House of Lords amendment for increasing protection for those who
have experienced depression was overturned before the bill was
passed last week.
Chief executive of mental health charity Maca Gil Hitchon said:
“People who have experienced depression often face stigma and
discrimination in the workplace, but they will now have less
protection than people with other disabilities.”
He added: “When fewer than 40 per cent of employers would consider
employing someone with a history of mental health problems,
compared with more than 60 per cent who would hire someone with a
physical disability, it’s clear that extra protection was needed
for mental health – and the government has decided not to provide
The Mental Capacity Bill was also given royal assent last week.
Co-chair of the Making Decisions Alliance Toby Williamson said: “At
last, this bill will give the two million people in England and
Wales who lack capacity because of illness, injury or disability,
the rights they deserve.”
The Drugs Bill was also passed.