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This chapter explores how the operation of the Mental Capacity Act 2008 is influenced by the sociocultural environment in Singapore, and subsequently how the prevailing attitudes and cultural milieu of the local populace have shaped the interactions between P, P’s caregivers and the legal system – specifically the extent of P’s participation in proceedings. The author attempts to explore methodically by first setting out the relevant legal provisions followed by the analysis of case judgments and a discussion on current legal barriers to P’s participation in proceedings. The impact of culture milieu, through the influence of Asian values and religious views, is further explored under the theme of surrogate decision-making for P in Singapore. This chapter concludes by considering ways to further advance and support P in the decision-making process in light of the finding of a culture of surrogate decision-making in Singapore.

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Policies are proposed as ‘radical humanism’ to eradicate poverty and redress inequality while vanquishing caste and untouchability. On the economic policy side, the chapter recommends intensification of cash and assets transfers and tax policy reform to reduce inequality through higher income tax progressivity, wealth, gift and inheritance taxes, increased taxes on luxuries, use of earmarked taxes for their intended purposes of education and health and tax administration reform to counter tax evasion.

It recommends cutting back bureaucratic hurdles, expanding private-public partnership in the provision of socio-economic services such as hospitals, and encouragement of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) for services to the very poor.

It recommends perceptible step-up of women’s rights through proportional representation and children’s condition including health and education. It proposes a youth task force to implement compulsory social service by youth in rural and urban sectors following existing global and prior domestic experience, and proposes a framework for services by sector. It urges political reform while pointing out that caste-based politics is unlikely to serve the nation in the long run.

It traces the ongoing work at the United Nations to draw attention to financial transfers of the colonial era and strongly suggests international financial reparations to counter the ramifications of global colonialism.

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This chapter examines the history of guardianship in Australia and the role of values and participation in Australian guardianship laws. The chapter postulates that there are three generations of Australian guardianship laws, the most recent of which is specifically designed around the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The implementation of that convention has been haphazard, but the chapter argues that guardianship authorities have, in the absence of clear legislative adoption, created policy frameworks that incorporate and promote the will and preferences of the person under guardianship. This suggests that in Australia policies and guidelines are as important as formal laws for ensuring that the will and preference of people with disabilities are given paramountcy in decision making.

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With contributions from an international team of experts, this collection provides a much-needed international, comparative approach to mental capacity law.

The book focuses particularly on exploring substantive commonalities and divergences in normative orientation and practical application embedded in different legal frameworks. It draws together contributions from eleven different jurisdictions across Europe, Asia and the UK and explores what productive or unproductive values and practices currently exist.

By providing a detailed comparison of how legal and ethical commitments to persons with disabilities are framed in capacity law across different national systems, the book highlights the values and practices that could lead to changes that better respect persons with disabilities in mental capacity regimes.

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Exclusion, Isolation, Domination and Extraction

Poverty in India is intimately connected with caste, untouchability, colonialism and indentured servitude, inseparable from the international experience of slavery and race.

Focusing on historical and modern practices, this book goes beyond traditional economic approaches to poverty and demonstrates its genesis in exclusion, isolation, domination and extraction resulting in the removal of human and economic rights. Examining cash and assets transfers and enhancement of women’s rights, primary health and education, it scrutinizes inadequacies in compensatory policies for redressing the balance.

This is an original interdisciplinary contribution that offers bold domestic and international policies anchored in human radicalism to eradicate poverty.

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This chapter focuses on the development and implementation of capacity-based law in Northern Ireland. The Mental Capacity Act (Northern Ireland) 2016, when it is fully implemented, will provide a capacity-based framework for decision making and will replace the current mental health law for everyone aged 16 and over. The chapter explores aspects of the Northern Ireland context that may have contributed to this approach being taken. It considers how participation and values influenced and informed the development of the Act and how they are promoted in the contents of the Act. The chapter also identifies some of the ongoing debates about this new approach, including the exclusion of those aged under 16 and some of the complex interfaces with criminal justice issues. The need to evaluate whether the new Act is effective in achieving its aim of more effectively promoting and protecting the rights of everyone whose ability to make decisions may be impaired is also highlighted.

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This chapter analyses the emergence of caste and untouchability in India and their ramifications for poverty and inequality. It points to India’s worsening caste separation despite constitutional guarantees against untouchability and protection of entry to public education and jobs. Caste remains the certificate for dominant castes to discriminate against lower castes in work, housing, movement, marriage and education resulting, effectively, in upper caste entitlements. This has direct impact on earning capacities. Data reveal lower castes occupy a lower share of the top income decile.

Caste structure comprises four main categories from priests to menials. The origin of caste is contestable. It cannot be attributed to Indo-Aryan Persia. Caste was categorized in purusha sukta, oldest among ancient texts circa 1200 BCE. Subsequent texts sharpened caste occupations, rituals and consequences of polluting caste mixes. Buddhism appeared and temporarily rid India of caste until the re-emergence of Hindu dynasties. Young widows were burnt alive on funeral pyres of deceased husbands at the diktat of brahmin priests even during eighteenth century. British rule further sharpened caste divisions through the judiciary and censuses. Caste continues with an important role in contemporary politics.

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Indigenous peoples with disabilities are extremely vulnerable when interacting with Canadian mental capacity law. They are disproportionately at risk of experiencing barriers to accessing justice, undermining their cultural values and Charter-protected rights of autonomy, medical self-determination and equality. There is a dearth of research addressing the values underlying supported decision-making and substitute decision-making for Indigenous communities in Canada. This chapter analyses the legal framing of mental capacity in Canada and the values and principles that are relevant for Indigenous peoples in Canada. I highlight the significant perspectives of Indigenous peoples in the framing of capacity and the types of intersectional barriers they experience accessing equitable decision-making processes in capacity law. The analysis reveals how Indigenous peoples with disabilities are isolated and denied autonomy. Their participation is curtailed as a result of lack of access to culturally appropriate treatment and systemic discrimination.

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The chapter lays out the objective of the book in identifying the sources of poverty and inequality in India complemented by global examples. It hypothesizes a sequence from genesis to proposed solutions. It summarizes relevant issues brought up in the course of the book. It cites slavery, colonialism, caste and other characteristics as sources of poverty and inequality and India’s limits in succeeding to eradicate caste and untouchability. It mentions measures such as the Human Development Index, Multidimensional Poverty and Happiness Score to reveal India’s condition through cross-country comparisons. It mentions the prevailing conditions of rural-urban income disparity, the condition of children in terms of health, nutrition and education, and the incomplete task of enhancing the role of women, among other manifestations. It provides a glimpse of the solutions offered through youth service reflecting available global practices, international financial reparations to counter the ramifications of colonialism, and domestic policies including tax policy to contain income inequality over and above intensified asset transfers.

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This chapter sets out the framework and rationale for Capacity, Participation and Values in Comparative Legal Perspective. We explore how core themes of values (that is, the values embedded within a legal framework and whose values are given effect) and participation (that is, whether and how the person’s voice and agency is fostered in decision making about them) establish a fruitful analytic prism through which to draw cross-jurisdictional comparisons of different mental capacity and guardianship legal regimes. Through a shared language with which to speak about capacity law we suggest that cross-jurisdictional learning and dialogue may be fostered.

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