What is Advocacy? Encouraging people to speak for themselves Being included in the decision-making process Being treated equally Challenging assumptions Explaining your rights How can Advocacy help? Sometimes people find it difficult to express concerns about their treatment or care while they are in hospital or living in the community. It can be particularly difficult if you are on a ‘section’ or if this is your first time in hospital. However, you have the right to be heard; your opinions should be listened to by the professional staff. An advocate can help you either by supporting you when you wish to voice your concerns or by representing your concerns if you feel you are unable to do so. The Advocacy Service operates independently of the mental health services. You will be listened to and treated with respect. It offers you the opportunity to talk to someone in confidence about issues relating to your treatment.