Community Treatment Orders in Newfoundland and Labrador: Who Is Protected?

Friday, May 6, 2016, 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm

McCann Centre (ED-2030B), Education Building, Memorial University of Newfoundland

For the presentation, click here.

About the session:

Community Treatment Orders (CTOs) provide a legal means for society to involuntarily commit into treatment individuals with severe mental illnesses who are judged to be a risk to themselves or to society. CTOs aim to seek a balance between the rights of the affected individual and the rights of those people who may be affected by his/her actions. CTOs are included in many mental health acts in Canada and in other countries; in this province, CTOs were included in the Mental Health Care and Treatment Act of 2006. The legislation provides a legal means of enforcing treatment, and specifically medication compliance.

While CTOs were welcomed by stakeholders to ensure that affected individuals obtain the necessary care, their actual use has been rife with ethical confusion and debate. In hindsight, the legislation appears to be a narrow response to a broad social issue. Are CTOs achieving the objectives they were meant to achieve in the legislation? Are there examples of how they were not used when they should have been, or misused? And if CTOs are not working optimally, what changes are required to better balance the rights of individuals with mental illnesses and the broader society?

About the presenter:

Nicole Snow, PhD, RN, CPMHN(C) is an Assistant Professor at Memorial University School of Nursing and Faculty Scholar with the Centre for Collaborative Health Professional Education, Faculty of Medicine, Memorial University. Her clinical experience is in adult acute care mental health. She presently teaches in the Bachelors and Masters programs at the School of Nursing. Prior to this, Nicole was a faculty member at the Centre for Nursing Studies and taught in the BN, PN, and Continuing Education programs. Nicole is interested in researching relationships in a variety of nursing contexts. This session is based on her PhD thesis completed in 2015.