Nova Scotia Association for Community Living (NSACL) was extremely disappointed to learn of the recent remedy in the Human Rights Board of Inquiry involving Beth MacLean, Joseph Delaney and Sheila Livingstone. While we believe no amount of money makes up for the injustices endured by these individuals, the dollar value that has been placed on each of their lives is truly unacceptable.
Beth MacLean was illegally confined to a psychiatric ward for nearly 20 years and is
is now entitled to $5,263 for each of those years. NSACL believes the compensation should have been on par with wrongful imprisonment cases in Canada, as these three individuals suffered loss of liberty, self-respect and dignity. This remedy is an indication of the systemic discrimination that still remains present throughout Nova Scotia.
There are over 500 people with disabilities currently being held in eight institutions across Nova Scotia. Adults with intellectual disabilities must be afforded the opportunity to live in typical houses and communities where they can exercise their full rights and responsibilities as citizens. Living in the community is a right of all Canadian citizens and thus public policy in Nova Scotia must facilitate, accommodate and enable the free and full exercise of this right.