Eleanor Roosevelt, 1958

'Where, after all, do universal human rights begin? In small places, close to home -- so close and so small that they cannot be seen on any map of the world. Yet they are the world of the individual person... Unless these rights have meaning there, they have little meaning anywhere. Without concerted citizen action to uphold them close to home, we shall look in vain for progress in the larger world.' Eleanor Roosevelt, 1958

The Small Places has moved...

The Small Places has moved to a new home here, including all the old posts. Any posts after 6th March 2014 will appear on the new website, but old posts are preserved here so that URLs linking here continue to work. Please check out the new site.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

The conference season

The conference season is upon us, and there are some great conferences coming up on the Mental Capacity Act 2005, the Mental Health Act and the deprivation of liberty safeguards.  Here's a selection, but if you know of others then please do send details my way and I'll post them here.  I am attending a few of these.  Where others drool over seeing their favourite bands in music festivals, I am quite beside myself with excitement about some of the talks, workshops and speakers that are lined up on the MCA and the DoLS... If you know of other conferences, seminars or events that might be of interest to readers, then drop me a line.

Yorkshire and Humberside Best Interests Assessors Conference, 19th September 2012

This conference is aimed at best interests assessors, and speakers will include Lucy Bonnerjea from the Department of Health, Adam Hartrick from Hempsons Solicitors, Mark Neary speaking about carers' experiences of DoLS and your truly. There are some great workshops on offer as well, including on DoLS in a Clinical setting, the role of Mental Health Assessors and DoLS and Safeguarding.  The conference will be held at Crowne Plazza Hotel, Wellington Street, Leeds, LS1 4DL.  Unfortunately I've just been told that this conference is full, but if you're interested in hearing about others then drop me a line and I'll put you in touch with the organisers.

Essex Autonomy Project Mental Capacity Act Summer School, 20-22 September 2012
I've waxed lyrical about this Essex Autonomy Project and their summer school often enough on this blog that readers might wonder if I've got shares in them. Reader, if they would let me, I would.  The summer school is brilliant - an amazing opportunity to explore the more philosophical issues underpinning the MCA and the DoLS.  Go!

Cardiff Law School's Taking Stock - The Mental Health & Mental Capacity Acts in Practice, 12 October 2012

This year's Taking Stock conference includes Mr Justice Peter Jackson as the keynote speaker.  It also features Professor Shôn Lewis speaking about Risk factors and interventions in early psychosis, then Richard Jones (author of the MCA bible) chairing a session with Prof Phil Fennell speaking about 'radical alternative’s to DoLS', and solicitor Yogi Amin reviewing the years’s top five MCA and MHA cases.  After lunch Sue Bailey, President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists will speak about 'Ethical ways of working', Katherine Scott (of 39 Essex St) talks about 'Deprivation of  liberty after Cheshire West' and Penny Letts will talk about best interests decision-making and  updating the MCA Code.  The conference is held at Royal Northern College of Music, 124 Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9RD.  Here's the flier.

Langley's Mental Capacity Act 2005: An Annual Review,
18th October 2012

Langley's Solicitors are hosting their annual review of the Mental Capacity Act. Speakers include barrister Joseph O’Brien (Deprivation and Restriction of Liberty by the Court of Protection), solicitor David Hewitt (Liberty in the Court of Protection), psychiatrist Dr Nick Brindle (Assessing the Capacity and Best Interests of Older People), Fenella Morris QC (The Interface between the MCA and the MHA), the Official Solicitor Alastair Pitblado (The Role of the Official Solicitor in the Court of Protection), barrister Jonathan Butler (Children in the Court of Protection?), barrister Bridget Dolan (Making decisions about Sex, Contraception and Marriage in the Court of Protection), barrister Aswini Weereratne (Compassion and Dignity in the Court of Protection), barrister Amy Street (Recent Case Law and Developments in the Court of Protection) and yours truly again (The Future of the Court of Protection; which will mostly be on the tension between the MCA and Article 12 CRPD). There will also be (somewhat terrifyingly) Question Time with Joseph O’Brien and myself - please be nice! The conference will be held at St. William’s College, York, YO1 7JF. Here's the flier.

Community Care: Achieving person-centred care for adults subject to MCA and DoLS, 21 November 2012
I really wish I could attend this conference, hosted by Community Care, as it looks fascinating.  It will be held in London, and the provisional speaker line up looks great.  The details aren't finalised yet, but as soon as they are I'll post them here.

Legal Action Group Community Care Conference, 29th November 2012
The Legal Action Group hold an annual community care conference which I've always wanted to attend, and frustratingly I can't get to it this year either.  Last year's speakers included Lord Justice Munby, Richard Gordon QC, and various community care law heroes of mine (I was going to say who, but I'll leave you to wonder).  So far LAG have just posted a tantalising save the date, but I'll keep you updated...

East Midlands Adult Safeguarding Board MCA/DOLS 'barcamp' unconference, 30 November 2012

Never heard of an 'unconference' before? Neither had I, but I am rather excited about this idea. This conference is targeted at 'people & organisations in health & social care in the East Midlands, who work in service delivery, [BIA's, IMCA services,] persons responsible for policy procedure & audit, managing & supervisory bodies, legal professionals, managers, adult safeguarding board members.'  The format is rather different from a traditional conference.  All participants are invited and encouraged to participate in some way - by sharing experiences and perspectives, by facilitating sessions, blogging, tweeting, taking notes.  Solicitors David Hewitt and Ben Troke, as well as myself, will all be doing something, but you'll have to wait and see what it is...  (my plans currently involve large quantities of office supplies, but we'll see how the mood takes us).  I'm especially excited about seeing what issues are raised for discussion by practitioners on the ground.  And also the very colourful flier:

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