Welsh assembly members were called back from the summer recess
last week to debate the draft mental health bill amid concerns that
it conflicted with the principality’s own strategy.
“All members agreed that it does not sit comfortably with the
adult mental health strategy that the assembly has already agreed
upon,” said Kirsty Williams, the Liberal Democrat who chaired the
“Our emphasis is on empowerment and our strategy says different
things from what this bill is about.”
Cathie Morton, director of Mind Cymru, said: “What emerged from
the debate was that there was deep division over keeping community
compulsion in the bill and the wide definition of mental illness
contained within it.
“The politicians also disagreed about the whole tenor of the
bill being based on the ‘dangerousness’ of a few
mentally ill people.”