This chapter addresses the ways in which the political and legal systems make provision for the care, treatment and control of people with mental health problems and disorders. The chapter describes the development of mental health policy and legislation in two countries - England and Australia - as examples of how mental health issues and challenges have been addressed within broader social-political contexts. England has been selected as a nation state with origins in the 'old world', while Australia is included for its 'new world' or postcolonial status. Importantly, both countries have placed considerable political emphasis on mental health reform in recent decades. The chapter includes a consideration of the contents and operation of current mental health legislation in both countries, including discussion of the extent to which recent reforms have been undertaken against a background of human rights concerns and the public's right to safety.
Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing: The Craft of Caring p. 597-606