On 10 December 1948 the general assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the declaration of the human rights act. The act was drawn up after the Second World War to prevent the repeat of the atrocities that happened during the conflict. During the nazi holocaust an estimated six million Jews were killed by gassing, shooting, disease and starvation, also political opponents, gays, gypsies, mental illnesses clergymen and people with learning disabilities were also subjected to torture and ultimately death.
Fundamentally the universal declaration of human rights was introduced to prevent tyranny. The European convention on human rights was drawn up in the form of articles which displays the rights and freedoms European people are to expect. There are thirty articles in total. If a person feels that their human rights have been infringed upon them may take their claim to Strasbourg and appeal to the European court of human rights. In 1998 these became law with effect from 2 October 2000 which meant that appeals could also take place in the UK, but decisions could be overturned in Strasbourg.
The European court has the powers to rule against countries, for example the court ruled that the Republic of Ireland must eliminate the ban on homosexuality. Recent legal battles which have hit headlines regarding human rights have included the case of Natallie Evans, who was left infertile after cancer treatment, took her case to the European court of human rights in Strasbourg on the grounds that her human rights were being infringed as she was being deprived of the right to have a family. Natallie Evans had endured defeats in the British courts and faced the destruction of the embryos, because her ex-fianci??
withdrew his consent to use them. After taking this case to Strasbourg the European court ruled in favour of the destruction of the embryos after backing the British courts, ruling that Natallie Evan's right o a family life, enshrined in article 8 of the European convention on human rights, could not over-ride her ex-fianci?? 's withdrawal of consent. A similar case is occurring in the Irish courts, but at present the Irish laws are unclear as to the status of the embryo in law, it is thought that this may clear that confusion which surrounds this.
Another case was baby charlotte who was born after 26 weeks gestation with vital organ damage. Physicians ruled for a DNR but her parents disagreed and took this to the High courts, the ruling was in favour of the physicians because even if Charlotte did survive her quality of life would be so poor that she should not be revived again. These cases illustrate the difficult decisions which need to be made on behalf of the human act declaration, and even after going through British courts with regards to human rights infringements, there is the chance the ruling can be over turned by the European Court in Strasbourg.
Question 2 In the case of Tisha it seems that most of her rights have been neglected, under the children's Act 2004. The social services, although acted in her best interest, and loco parentis failed to take a substantial amount in to consideration. She was placed in a children's home which was clearly full and the fact that Tisha was placed in there warranted the home as over crowded because she had to share with another child. She was entitled to her own room, I. e. privacy. In this situation she had the right to be treated as an individual.
The case study does not mention that English is Tisha's mother tongue, if it is not then she should have expected a translator because there is a clear division between Tisha and the other children in the home and it could be a language barrier, also Tisha is the only black child in the home, in the case study it was clear that the children were openly hostile to her therefore the children should have been educated regarding ethnic minorities, the staff should have worked harder to integrate her in to the social groups of the home, in any case she had the right to not suffer from racial abuse.
There is also no mention of her right to practise religion or the facilities. This could cause a loss of identity. Tisha, because of the circumstances with her mother had the right to a normal life as possible given the situation and she may have gone to a Hindi School, she has been separated from her family and friends, perhaps some form of counselling would have been appropriate. The case study does not mention that her dietary requirements were taken in to account.
The staff were clearly not trained for this situation, they have little knowledge of Tisha's culture or religion and should have been in the know, after all not all children in care are Caucasian. Perhaps the social services should have spoke to parents of Tisha's peers or her school before making a decision as this was not identified in the case study then perhaps they could have come to a more appropriate solution. Her situation may have been barely acceptable very short term, a day or two but the fact the staff have noticed her increasingly unhappiness indicates she was there longer for the staff to make such observations.
The staff should have either declared their incompetence to deal with this situation or intensely gathered as much information on Tisha to accommodate her needs, educated the children of the care home in preparation and stated that it would not be long term and that social services would have to research more in to finding Tisha more appropriate accommodation, but the staff should have been trained to deal with the situation in the first place, with a good understanding of her needs.
The fact that there is a high staff turnover is a worrying factor for a children's home and should have been investigated as to the reasons why or maybe a more rigid application process. According to the clients rights Tisha should have had privacy and she did not, her personal beliefs were not acknowledged. The client has "the right to have personal beliefs, preferences and choices acknowledged and supported including culture, religion and political beliefs ".
Tisha also has the rights of freedom from exploitative and abusive practise; she was suffering from abuse from the other children. Based on these facts from the case study, her treatment was substandard she should have expected more from social services, although the care staff did have good intentions they clearly could not cope with the situation and have not intercepted the abuse she received from the other children. All of her rights have been ignored.
Given her circumstances maybe if her being placed there for a short period, maybe a day or two would have been just acceptable but in the mean time social services should had worked harder to find more appropriate accommodation for her, to meet her needs. If I was the manager responsible for the residential care, I would insist on all the staff being trained on human rights and what each child should expect. I would also expect the children to be educated on different cultures so it would not be such a shock when they come across a culture other than their own.
I would also maybe keep a room empty for emergencies and stipulate it is temporary accommodation until a more appropriate solution has been reached. I would insist on employing staff from other ethnic groups to bridge the gap for children who have other needs, such as religion. Before the child arrived I would expect to be fully briefed on the child including dietary requirements. I would then brief the staff, this would give me time to put into place an action plan on what the child needs and how we can meet these needs.
I would also insist on a counsellor to speak to the child in order to try to make the transition a little less distressing, more specifically in Tishas' case, I would plan trips to the hospital to see her mother, so she feels she hasn't been permanently separated from her mother and take reassurance from this. I would also insist on her education being as normal for her as possible, whether it means bringing in a translator. I would also allocate a place where she could practice her religion.