Seni's law

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Course information
Course information
About the course

This event is a contribution to the current debate on race, the experience of mental health and mental health services, on detention and deaths in custody. It is open to, everyone including stakeholders, people with lived experience, carers, healthcare, mental health and social care professionals, ‘ activists, members of the legal profession and emergency services.

Use of Force (Mental Health Units) Act 2018 – known as Seni’s Law – and the implementation guidance are the focus of the day. Seni Lewis died under police restraint in a mental health unit at the Bethlem Royal Hospital in 2010. His mother, a key collaborator in developing this event, campaigned for the Act and we are now working with her to support its implementation. Aji and Marcia Rigg, the sister of Sean Rigg who died in 2008, are central voices in the day.

Course programme

Speakers for the programme include:

  • Sir Norman Lamb, Chair of South London & Maudsley: introductory comments;
  • Dr Maurice Lipsedge, Consultant Psychiatrist: on the controversial topic of “Excited Delirium”. Maurice is co-author of the influential 1981 book “Aliens and Alienists”;
  • Dr Lade Smith, Consultant Psychiatrist and Director of Forensic Services with SLaM: on the ‘Mental Health Act Review’;
  • Mike Franklin, SLaM Non Exec Director: on ‘Race and Detention, The Wider Picture’;
  • Natalie Creary. Black Thrive: keeping Black bodies out of harm’s way;
  • Deborah Coles, Director INQUEST: Are we really ‘learning lessons’: the search for accountability and change.
  • Rachael Whittaker: Health & Justice Policy Lead. Department of Health & Social Care: ‘Update on Seni’s Law implementation’;
  • Aji Lewis and Marcia Rigg in conversation with Raju Bhatt, the solicitor involved with many of these cases.

We hope to progress the conversation in these difficult areas, and to contribute to the collaborative work across sectors and services to prevent future tragedies and protect black women such as Aji and Marcia from going through these losses again.

This event took place on the 5th of February 2021. To access to recording, please book a place using the ‘book now’ button and follow the steps to watch the videos from the day.

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