Mental Health Act Police

Discussion in 'Soap Box' started by Crue-K, May 21, 2009.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Crue-K

    Crue-K Well-Known Member

    The title may seem alarmist, however such a unit does exist in the UK. They work out of a new government agency called 'Fixated Threat Assessment Centre'. Their powers range from detain potential terrorist subjects to those of us will mental health issues and even those who voice opposition to the governement.

    This following text is from the Houses of Parliament Business minutes:-

    Fixated Threat Assessment Centre
    Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what criteria the Fixated Threat Assessment Centre use to decide whom to investigate; [143132]

    (2) how many people have been (a) detained, (b) sectioned and (c) investigated by the Fixated Threat Assessment Centre; [143141]

    (3) what the (a) names and (b) job descriptions are of the employees of the Fixated Threat Assessment Centre; [143142]

    (4) who authorised the establishment of the Fixated Threat Assessment Centre. [143033]

    Mr. McNulty [holding answer s 15 June 2007]: The Fixated Threat Assessment Centre (FTAC) was established in order to better protect the public and vulnerable individuals in response to evidence that a significant proportion of people who engage in bizarre communications or contact with prominent people in public life are severely and acutely mentally ill and urgently need professional help. A small but significant number of such individuals can pose a risk to the public, the prominent person, and themselves, particularly in environments where there are armed police officers. The Home Office, the Department of Health and the Metropolitan Police Service agreed to establish a joint police/mental health unit, on a pilot basis, to assess and manage the risk posed by such individuals. Where appropriate, FTAC will introduce (or reintroduce) the individuals into existing community mental health care through established pathways. If offences are disclosed, and the circumstances warrant such intervention, consideration will also be given to a criminal investigation.

    Since its creation in October 2006, FTAC has dealt with 168 cases. FTAC does not detain people in psychiatric hospitals. When it encounters an individual in need of mental health care it alerts their general practitioners and psychiatrists, who then provide appropriate help under existing legislation. FTAC may make use of police powers under section 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983 to take a person who appears to be suffering from mental disorder, and in immediate need of care or control, to a place of safety. When people are removed to hospital under section 136, they are examined by a registered medical practitioner and interviewed by an approved social worker, not associated with FTAC, in order to make any necessary arrangements for their treatment or care. To date, FTAC personnel have used this power on nine occasions.

    The remainder of the information sought by the hon. Gentleman relates to operational matters which are the responsibility of the Metropolitan Police Service. I have
    25 Jun 2007 : Column 303W
    asked the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service to write to the hon. Gentleman to provide him with this information.

    Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many individuals have been detained by the Fixed Threat Assessment Centre since its inception, broken down by (a) gender and (b) ethnic origin; what the (i) average and (ii) maximum length of detention has been; and how many are currently detained; [141343]

    (2) what safeguards are in place to ensure that individuals detained as a result of actions by the Fixed Threat Assessment Centre are only detained under the appropriate legislation; [141344]

    (3) what reasons underlay the decision to establish the Fixed Threat Assessment Centre; who decided it should be established; how many (a) police officers, broken down by rank, (b) psychiatrists and (c) psychologists are assigned to the centre; and if he will make a statement. [141345]

    Mr. McNulty [holding answer s 11 June 2007]: The Fixated Threat Assessment Centre (FTAC) was established in order to better protect the public and vulnerable individuals in response to evidence that a significant proportion of people who engage in bizarre communications or contact with prominent people in public life are severely and acutely mentally ill and urgently need professional help. A small but significant number of such individuals can pose a risk to the public, the prominent person and themselves, particularly in environments where there are armed police officers. The Home Office, the Department of Health and the Metropolitan Police Service agreed to establish a joint police/mental health unit, on a pilot basis, to assess and manage the risk posed by such individuals. Where appropriate, FTAC will introduce (or re-introduce) the individuals into existing community mental health care through established pathways. If offences are disclosed, and the circumstances warrant such intervention, consideration will also be given to a criminal investigation.

    FTAC is comprised of nine police officers (one chief inspector, one inspector, one sergeant and six police constables) and five mental health professionals (three full-time community psychiatric nurses, a half-time forensic psychiatrist and a half-time forensic psychologist).

    FTAC does not detain people in psychiatric hospitals. When it encounters an individual in need of mental health care it alerts their general practitioners and psychiatrists, who then provide appropriate help under existing legislation. FTAC may make use of police powers under section 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983 to take a person who appears to be suffering from mental disorder, and in immediate need of care or control, to a place of safety. When people are removed to hospital under section 136, they are examined by a registered medical practitioner and interviewed by an approved social worker, not associated with FTAC, in order to make any necessary arrangements for their treatment or care. To date, FTAC personnel have used this power on nine occasions (comprising six white, north European males, one white, south European male, two white, north European females).


    Initially it was a trial project, however it is now up and running and fully using it's powers.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-457934/Revealed-Blairs-secret-stalker-squad.html

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/crime/article1847697.ece
     
  2. fromthatshow

    fromthatshow Staff Alumni

    Scary man
     
  3. Random

    Random Well-Known Member

    I suspect the meaning of the word "using" (in this context) is highly subjective.
     
  4. Jack Rabbit

    Jack Rabbit Well-Known Member

    As a citizen of the United States, I draw the remnants of the Constitution around me like a warm blanket and pretend that it will protect me against such a police state.
    Excuse me, there's a knock on the door, I'm just going to be a mi
     
  5. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    Jack Rabbit!! NOOOOO, NOT YOU TOO! WITH HIS LAST STRUGGLE HE MANAGED TO PRESS THE POST BUTTON! NOW I CAN SAVE

    Fear not citizens. The Government is your friend. Carry on.
     
  6. ~Tosh~

    ~Tosh~ Forum Buddy

    The UK police go by section 136 of the mental health act,.,...


    Section 136
    Removal of People from Public Places

    Summary

    Section 136 enables a police officer to remove someone from a public place and take them to a Place of Safety. Like Section 135, this is not an admission Section, but one which allows assessment to take place at the Place of Safety, as to whether a Section 2 or other admission Section should be implemented. Section 136 states clearly that the purpose of being taken to the Place of Safety is to enable the person to be examined by a doctor and interviewed by an Approved Social Worker, and for the making of any necessary arrangements for treatment or care.

    Duration
    Up to 72 hours from the time the person first arrives at the Place of Safety. There is no provision for this time to be renewed or extended. Normally the assessment should be completed well within the 72 hour period and the Section 136 powers then lapse.

    Conditions
    The police officer must find the person in "a place to which the public have access"

    and:
    the person must appear (to the police officer) to have a mental disorder and to be in "immediate need of care or control";
    and
    the police officer must think it necessary to take the person to a Place of Safety, in the interests of the person her/himself or for the protection of others.

    Notes
    This Section has been the subject of considerable controversy. A police officer may have little experience of people with mental health problems, and there was concern that people would be inappropriately stopped in the street and detained by the police, and that the police would use this power disproportionately in respect of black people. Over recent years, the bodies involved - the police, doctors and other hospital staff, and social services departments - have, in many areas, set up liaison meetings to ensure that the use of Section 136 is closely monitored and reviewed to ensure its use is appropriate.
     
  7. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    In all seriousness, this is all quite interesting. I took a class called Justice and Security and we studied the UK a lot, given that it was apparently a textbook example of balancing democratic ideals with controversial measures for 'safety.'
     
  8. Random

    Random Well-Known Member

    That's funny. I consider the UK a place that is on the brink of becoming a police state. How it keeps from going all the way over is beyond me but someday it will and the US probably won't be too far behind.
     
  9. FTACWatch

    FTACWatch New Member

    I am setting up a blog to monitor and expose the activities of the Fixated Threat Assessment Centre (FTAC) and those medical professionals that collaborate with them.

    I would like to hear from fellow victims.
     
  10. Mikeintx

    Mikeintx Well-Known Member

    Its funny but it seems most people on this site that dont get us american and "our guns" are from the UK. It is reasons like this that our founding fathers decided to give us the right to bear arms(although our nation is so pussified at this point I dont think it really matters much anymore).
     
  11. JohnADreams

    JohnADreams Well-Known Member

    I'm neither a VIP or a stalker of any VIP's, so I can't say I'm worried about it.

    Although, stalking might give me something to do in my free time. Hmmmm..
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 3, 2009
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.