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Peers ask disability charities: are we doing enough to protect vulnerable adults?

The House of Lords Committee charged with investigating the Mental Capacity Act 2005 will hear from several major disability charities on Tuesday 16 July.

The Committee will question the witnesses on the practical effect of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 on individuals and their families. Peers will probe whether the Act is understood and used by those who need its protections the most; whether professionals really know what is in someone's best interests; and whether prosecutions for abuse of learning disabled adults are being pursued.

At 10.40am, the Committee will hear from:

  • Vanda Ridley, Communications Manager at the Down's Syndrome Association;
  • Beverley Dawkins OBE, National Officer for Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities at Mencap; and
  • Hannah Barnett, Head of Operations at the National Autistic Society.

Following on, at 11.40am, the Committee will question:

  • George McNamara, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at the Alzheimer's Society;
  • Peter McCabe, Chief Executive of Headway; and
  • Paul Farmer, Chief Executive of Mind.

The evidence session will take place at 10.40am, on Tuesday 16 July in Committee Room 2 of the House of Lords.

The sessions will be webcast at and is also open to the public. Journalists wishing to attend should go to Parliament's Cromwell Green Entrance and should allow time for security screening.

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