This piece, written by Yeni Rosa Damayanti of the Indonesian Mental Health Association, explores the condition of people with psychosocial disability who live in confinement or shackling, during and post disasters in Central Sulawesi.
The protection of those living with psychosocial
disability during a state of emergency is outlined in Article 11 of the
Convention of Rights for People with Psychosocial Disability (UNCPRD), which states:
In September 2018, Central Sulawesi in Indonesia
witnessed an earthquake, with a magnitude of 7.4, followed by multiple
aftershocks, and a tsunami with waves as high as 5 meters. According to data
compiled by the government, these natural disasters, in addition to
liquefaction in one village, saw a loss of 2,081 human lives, 1,309 missing
persons, 12,568 injured persons, and evacuation of over 200,000 people to 120
The Indonesian Mental Health Association (IMHA)
conducted an investigative study in disaster areas to assess whether or not
those with psychosocial disabilities were being provided with the same
treatment and care as other residents during and post disaster conditions. The
IMHA found that when a natural disaster occurred in Indonesia, persons living
with psychosocial disability, who are primarily being restrained and caged
within four walls, are most likely to be forgotten in times of crisis (and
evacuation). In addition, they are treated as outcasts, without any protection
of their rights, dignity or human lives. IMHA accordingly visited several
locations affected by natural disasters in Central Sulawesi to observe and
record the conditions of those living with psychosocial disability who continue
to be shackled post-earthquake, tsunami and liquefaction. This photo essay
documents their findings.
WATUTU VILLAGE, DONGGALA DISTRICT
KABOBONA VILLAGE, SIGI DISTRICT
Sigi District was affected by the earthquake as well as liquefaction. Many victims lost their lives by drowning into the liquefied soil in Kabobona Village, where houses sank up to 3 meters deep. Houses that once had ceramic floors submerged under 1.5 meters of mud, which hardened to form a new floor.
SUB-DISTRICT, CITY OF PALU
UJUNA, WEST PALU
SOUTH PETOBO, SIGI
LEMBASADA VILLAGE, DONGGALA
Yeni Rosa Damayanti has many years of experience working on various issues of rights for persons with psychosocial disabilities and her work has not been limited to the mental health sector, often collaborating and engaging with other human rights movements and the cross disability movement.