Most people presume that disability can be only physical. However, people can be affected by various mental conditions and disorders that can result in mental disability.
Dementia, obsessive compulsive disorder, depression and self harm are a few mental disorders that can result in disability.Like other disabled individuals, mentally disabled people also have their rights. These rights have been provided by various laws passed by the government to safeguard the interest of this particular group.
The primary law that protects the interests of mentally disabled people is the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA). This act covers those individuals whose mental condition prevents them from carrying out their day-to day activities or routines effectively. The act also covers those individuals who had a history of this type of disability, but since then have been treated with medication. This acts protects them from being discriminated against being provided with opportunities in various fields, including but not limited to employment, education and other services.
However, DDA does not consider an individual with particular type of disorder as mentally disabled, by listing out the type of disorder in its act. The consideration is on the seriousness and affects of the mental disorder, rather than the disorder alone. For example, DDA will cover individuals who have a severe form of depression due to which they are not able to carry out their routine tasks without the help of someone. DDA will not cover those individuals who are suffering from a mild form of depression, as the mental disorder in question is not obstructing them from carrying gout their routine tasks independently.
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