Insane Granny

Reporter: Marguerite McKinnon

You won't believe this could happen in Australia in 2008. Neither could Melba Morris.

Melba Morris has a mind like a steel trap, a prolific writer, social commentator, creator of exquisite tapestries and one of the most ordered people you will ever meet.

Imagine her surprise when police, 2 psychiatric officers and a driver arrived on her door, telling her she was mentally ill.

Mrs Morris was taken to hospital, and put in a room for three hours with no explanation.

A psychiatrist questioned her for another three hours before declaring her normal.

Under Queensland's Mental Health Act, a Justice of the Peace can order anyone to be brought in by force for a mental assessment under a so-called Justices Examination Order" or J-E-O.

Shadow Health Minister John Paul Langbroek.

A new report's found in just over two years this has happened to more than two and a half THOUSAND people. And more than half were later found to be perfectly normal.

Queensland barrister David Solomon has included Mrs Morris' case in his report into Freedom of Information legislation.

Finding it is "...unreasonable to deprive someone of their liberty and refuse to tell them what allegations preceded the action."

Don De Moulin has been a Justice of the Peace for 50 years...and CEO of New South Wales Public Hospitals for 30 years...

A friend of Mrs Morris, he says her treatment belongs under a dictatorship.

Until the law is changed, victims are restricted from finding out who reported them as mentally ill.