Supervised treatment orders in practice report

The Disability Act provides a legal framework for protecting the rights of people with a disability, who are detained for the purposes of treatment because they pose a significant risk of serious harm to others.

Part 8 of the Act allows for civil detention through supervised treatment orders (STOs) made by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). It also permits court mandated detention and treatment such as residential treatment orders, parole orders, custodial supervision orders and extended supervision orders.

The Act requires the Senior Practitioner to ensure that the rights of this group of people are protected. The Senior Practitioner is responsible for approving a treatment plan prepared for a person when an application is made for a STO. The VCAT approves and issues an STO and the Senior Practitioner is responsible for supervising the implementation of that order.

The Office of the Public Advocate has released the report Supervised Treatment Orders in Practice: How are the Human Rights of People Detained under the Disability Act 2006 Protected?

This report tests the STO regime against a human rights framework. It does this by considering whether the regime strikes an appropriate balance between human rights, restrictive interventions and 'benefit' for people on STOs. The report puts this question in context by reviewing the literature relating to people with an intellectual disability, civil detention, and the use of risk assessment tools to predict future 'dangerous' behaviour.

The report can be found on the Office of the Public Advocate website via the link below.

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