Dear Mrs Wright
In the absence of Mr Walsh on leave I am replying to your letter which was received on 4 November 1997.
The Mental Health Commission for Northern Ireland (the Commission) was established by Article 85 of the Mental Health (Northen Ireland) Order 1986 and its funcitons are defined in Article 86 of the Order. I enclose a copy of the section from the Commission's Annual Report for 1996/7 which details the role of the Commission.
In relation to your question about the Commission's role in matters where concerns have been expressed about treatment of mental patients by government agencies it is not clear to me what you have in mind. Can you be more specific please?
M Kerr (Miss)
Assistant Secretary to the Commission
[Miss Kerr, Assistant Secretary to the Commission. Mr. Kerr QC, now the Lord Chief Justice for Northern Ireland, was Chairman of the Commission. I wonder..........]