Sufferers of mental illness will receive greater protection from disability discrimination as a result of new legislation that has come into effect this week.
The Mental Health (Discrimination) Act 2013 passed into law on February 28th and gets rid of outdated legislation that has been deemed to interfere with the rights of people with mental health problems.
Thanks to the new law, people with mental illnesses will be able to participate in jury service and become a corporate director, while MPs will no longer lose their seats if they are sectioned under the Mental Health Act for more than six months, a rule that previously applied even to people who made a full recovery.
Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg said: "It's nonsense that a person can't contribute to public life if they've had mental health problems. Discrimination like this has no place in modern society and it is right that these rules are wiped out."
Mental health charity Mind has thanked Lord Dennis Stevenson of Coddenham and MP Gavin Barwell for their work in ensuring the act was passed, describing the development as a "watershed moment" for attitudes to mental health.
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Posted by Chris Stevenson