Babcock, Sandra : Small Grant, 2014-2015


Sandra Babcock (Law School)

Cornell Law School
Project Title: 
Expert Roundtable: The Implementation of Domestic and International Prohibitions on Executing Mentally Ill and Cognitively Impaired Individuals
Project Abstract: 
The project will support a new initiative designed to promote the implementation of domestic and international prohibitions on executing mentally ill and cognitively impaired individuals. Although these principles are widely recognized, advocates seeking their implementation around the world face significant hurdles. Most countries lack effective procedures to determine whether prisoners suffer from mental illnesses or disabilities. As a result, mentally-ill and disabled prisoners continue to be sentenced to death around the world, and are sometimes executed. The objective of the roundtable meeting of international lawyers and mental health experts is to develop a long-term research and advocacy strategy to meet the challenges identified above. This roundtable will aid in the launch of a longer-term project on capital punishment and mental illness/disability. The project’s long-term objective is to reduce the number of mentally ill or disabled individuals around the world who are executed, sentenced to death, or even detained on capital charges. Through interdisciplinary collaboration with mental health experts, the project will develop a set of best practices relevant to national justice systems worldwide.