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Indonesia Research & Feature | Mental Illness

Disrupted Minds, Shackled Bodies

Despite its criminalization, the practice of pasung, the physical shackling of people with mental illness, has continued throughout Indonesia, with an estimated 18,000 subjected to the imprisonment according to a new Human Rights Watch report. Families in the poor, rural regions of the Muslim-majority nation often turn to faith-healers and other pseudoscientific practices as mental health services are severely lacking throughout the country. Psychological and social divergence from societal norms are conflated as disruptions to community relations land “violators” in squalor in Indonesia’s poorly maintained mental hospitals.

Read more:
Living in Hell (Human Rights Watch)

Thousands of Mentally Ill Indonesians Are Imprisoned in Shackles, Report Says” (TIME)
Indonesia’s mentally ill languish in shackles” (AFP via Yahoo! News)
‘Living in hell’: mentally ill people in Indonesia chained and confined” (The Guardian)

(Image Credit: via Yahoo! News)