People with disabilities have “the same human rights as the rest of the human race”, the Supreme Court has said in a landmark judgement that three people had been unlawfully deprived of their liberty.
The Court ruled that two sisters with learning difficulties and a man with cerebral palsy and Down’s syndrome had been denied their human rights despite the best intentions of those looking after them in care facilities in Surrey and Cheshire respectively.
“A gilded cage is still a cage,” Lady Hale, the deputy president of the Supreme Court, wrote in the ruling. She added that their rights “have sometimes to be limited or restricted because of their disabilities, but the starting point should be the same as that for everyone else”.
Last week, a report by a House of Lords Select Committee found tens of thousands of vulnerable people were being unlawfully detained in care homes and hospitals and that legislation created to protect people with mental health conditions had failed.