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Free Britney movement leads California to enact law to limit conservatorships

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 10/1/2022 Jenny Goldsberry

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a new law Friday that would revise California's guardian-conservatorship law that Britney Spears was under for 14 years until she was released by a Los Angeles judge last year.

The new bill from the California Assembly, AB 1663, will "require the petition for conservatorship to include alternatives to conservatorship considered by the petitioner or proposed conservator and reasons why those alternatives are not suitable, alternatives tried by the petitioner or proposed conservators, if any, and the reasons why those alternatives do not meet the conservatee’s needs." It will also prohibit regional centers from being named as a conservator, but it will permit them to act as designees of the director.

This comes as a revision to the previously enacted CARE Act. The legislation established courts for homeless people, as well as those who have severe mental health and substance abuse disorders, but it continued to allow those who do not comply with treatment to be recommended for a conservatorship. Back in June, the New York-based group Human Rights Watch took aim at the consideration of the bill, writing a letter urging California lawmakers to reject the law for "a more holistic, rights-respecting approach."

GAVIN NEWSOM SIGNS LAW CREATING COURTS FOR HOMELESS AND MENTALLY ILL

California Governor Gavin Newsom signs legislation establishing the Community Assistance, Recovery and Empowerment Act, in San Jose, Calif., Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2022. The CARE program allows family members, first responders and others to ask a judge to draw up a treatment plan for someone diagnosed with certain disorders, including schizophrenia. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group via AP) © Provided by Washington Examiner California Governor Gavin Newsom signs legislation establishing the Community Assistance, Recovery and Empowerment Act, in San Jose, Calif., Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2022. The CARE program allows family members, first responders and others to ask a judge to draw up a treatment plan for someone diagnosed with certain disorders, including schizophrenia. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group via AP)

AB 1663 author Brian Maienschein said in a tweet he wrote the bill to "help people with disabilities maintain choice & control over their lives while receiving [support without courts]."

“This measure is an important step to empower Californians with disabilities to get needed support in caring for themselves and their finances, while maintaining control over their lives to the greatest extent possible,” the governor wrote in a press release at its signing.

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Britney Spears became the face of conservatorships when she was released from her own court order.

 

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Tags: Britney Spears, News, Mental Health, California, Law

Original Author: Jenny Goldsberry

Original Location: Free Britney movement leads California to enact law to limit conservatorships

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