People with mental illness are among the most marginalised worldwide and often unable to access appropriate care and support. Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Person with Disabilities (CRPD)1 describes the right of persons with disabilities (including psychosocial disabilities) to live independently and be included in the community. This includes the right to:

(a) choose where and with whom one lives

(b) have access to appropriate support

(c) use community services and facilities

 These ideals may not connect well with realities on the ground. For example: values of autonomy and self-determination may not translate across cultures, resource constraints may limit the availability of community support, and symptoms of severe mental illness may impact on the capacity to make informed choices2,3. Little is known about what being included in the community means for persons with psychosocial disabilities across different social, economic, and political contexts and how this could be achieved in practice.

Author MHJ