Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Source Publication

Eilionoir Flynn, Ann Arstein-Kerslake, Cliona de Bhalis & Maria Laura Serra (eds.). Global Perspectives on Legal Capacity Reform: Our Voices, Our Stories, London: Routledge (2019).


Article 12 CRPD guarantees persons with disabilities the right to equal recognition before the law and the right to enjoy legal capacity on an equal basis with others in all aspects of life. It is the right to have one’s decisions legally recognised. Reshma’s decision not to take medication prescribed for schizophrenia was not accepted and respected by the physician. Instead, the physician implied that Reshma would be denied any further medical care for her current symptoms until she complied with a pharmaceutical-based treatment course for her psychiatric condition. Thus, Reshma would have had to take drugs against her will and preferences, to access standard medical care. In addition, by not respecting her legal capacity regarding Reshma’s decision not to take drugs for her schizophrenia, the physician further discriminated against Reshma in regards to other aspects of her health, including investigation of a new set of symptoms and signs that ultimately should have led to an earlier diagnosis and treatment of Reshma’s brain tumour and thus less pain, anguish and complications for her.