Independent, Confidential, and Without Judgement

Rights Advisors have specialized training on the Mental Health Act. They will hold confidential meetings with involuntary patients to explain their legal rights under the Mental Health Act and will also support those who choose to exercise their rights. They will not share any information with a person’s treatment team or support network without their consent.

Rights Advisors may have both lived and professional experience and come from a variety of backgrounds, including peer support. They focus on the person experiencing detention and involuntary treatment and their wishes. They will help without judgement.

Rights Advisors are not lawyers. The Independent Rights Advice Service does not give legal advice.

Rights Advisors are not health care providers. They are also independent from the care, treatment, or supervision of any involuntary patients on extended leave. Rights Advisors have no connection to law enforcement agencies, like police.

Training Requirements

Rights Advisors must complete training, which includes the following topics:

  • Guidance from people with lived experience under BC’s Mental Health Act;
  • Law, services, and systems under BC’s Mental Health Act;
  • Anti-Indigenous racism;
  • Indigenous cultural safety;
  • Métis people, culture and history and resources for Métis self-identified people;
  • Fundamentals of anti-oppression;
  • Trauma-informed practice;
  • Accessible communication (including supporting neurodiversity and cognitive diversity in communication);
  • Adapting services for children and youth; and
  • Harm reduction.