The group’s welcome must demonstrate that its members care first and foremost about the people for whom the action is undertaken. The initial contact between the group and a given individual must therefore allow the individual to define and specify his/her needs. As much information as possible concerning the rights of each party and the existing remedies must also be provided upon request.
Assistance provided by mental health rights advocacy groups consists of supporting individuals in the steps they undertake to assert their rights and to access the remedies provided.
Support goes beyond assistance in the sense that the group, when necessary, has the mandate to assist individuals who need such services in some of their undertakings, particularly when they must deal with third parties in the exercise of their rights.
Proactive intervention includes all the actions conducted by the group when it believes that an individual or individuals, either permanently or temporarily, have difficulties such that, if their rights were affected, they would not be capable of seeking assistance. Such an intervention however, must always respect the will of these individuals.
Collective action covers all the actions conducted by the group with and on behalf of a group of persons who are isolated yet whose problems are of a similar nature.
Systemic action includes all the actions conducted by the group in order to challenge the validity or the application of a regulation, a practice or a policy in effect in a public institution or a private corporation that could, at the regional level, adversely affect the respect of human rights. This type of intervention could also apply to a specific government policy. Systemic action relies on community life and on the input of concerned individuals to the actions geared to bring about social transformations.
Promotion and Awareness
The promotion and awareness initiative means that the group will speak publicly in order to promote the respect of the rights of individuals who have suffered or who suffer from mental health problems and to report on their condition. Furthermore, the group takes action by promoting the principle that people faced with a mental health problem take ownership and are empowered in all areas of their lives. This initiative also includes carrying out activities and designing tools to raise people awareness and to develop their critical thinking regarding mental health issues.