The Human Rights Act 1998 (also known as the Act or the HRA) came into force in the United Kingdom in October 2000. It is composed of a series of sections that have the effect of codifying the protections in the European Convention on Human Rights into UK law. All public bodies (such as courts, police, local governments, hospitals, publicly funded schools, and others) and other bodies carrying out public functions have to comply with the Convention rights. The Human Rights Act protects individuals from torture (mental, physical or both), inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment and deportation or extradition (being sent to another country to face criminal charges) if there is a real risk that they will face torture or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Torture occurs when someone acting in an official capacity (for example a police officer or soldier) deliberately causes serious pain or suffering (physical or mental) to another person. This might be to punish someone, or to intimidate or obtain information from them. Public authorities are not allowed to inflict such treatment on individuals, and they must also protect them from this treatment where it comes from someone else. For example, if they know an individual is suffering inhumane or degrading treatment, they must intervene to stop it. Inhuman treatment or punishment includes serious physical assaults, psychological interrogation, inhumane detention conditions or restraints, failing to give medical treatment or taking it away from a person with a serious illness and threatening to torture someone, if the threat is real and immediate.
Relating this to Winterbourne house, the staff must be aware that they must maintain the highest standards of care whilst making sure that they do not breach any of the legislation within the Human Rights Act. This means that they must be able to find out if an individual is being abused within or out of the day centre.
The Sexual... [continues]
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