Britney Spears Offered Help From ACLU To Get Out Of Conservatorship
Britney Spears has been offered help from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to get out of the conservatorship imposed upon her 12 years ago.
Britney, 38, has not had control over many of her financial or career decisions since 2008, after her father, Jamie Spears, became her legal conservator.
Jamie took control over his daughter’s business affairs following concerns over alleged mental health problems she had been suffering from at the time.
Jamie temporarily left the role in 2019 due to health problems, and had been due to resume the conservatorship this year.
However, Britney reportedly does not want her father to be her conservator anymore, and instead wants to replace him with her care manager, licensed professional conservator Jodi Montgomery. However, the courts did not side in favour of Britney’s requests.
According to court documents obtained by The New York Times, Britney believes the conservatorship ‘must be changed substantially in order to reflect the major changes in her current lifestyle and her stated wishes’.
The ongoing case has led to some members of Britney’s dedicated fanbase starting a #FreeBritney campaign under the belief that she was forced into the conservatorship.
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I feel like we will look back at this time in quarantine as a huge transitional stage in our lives ….. we don’t know when things will go back to normal but we are staying positive and learning so much about ourselves !!!! For me I want to thank all my dear … sweet … real fans for being so damn wonderful !!! I can feel your hearts and I know you can feel mine 💞🌹💖 … thank you for your support ⭐️⭐️⭐️ !!!
Now, the ACLU has pledged its support to Britney, tweeting the following offer of assistance:
People with disabilities have a right to lead self-directed lives and retain their civil rights. If Britney Spears wants to regain her civil liberties and get out of her conservatorship, we are here to help her.
For an article published on the ACLU website, communications strategist Eva Lopez spoke with staff attorney with the ACLU’s Disability Rights Project staff attorney Zoe Brennan-Krohn, about how conservatorship could be threatening Britney’s civil rights.
Brennan-Krohn – who views conservatorship as a disability rights issue – said:
We don’t know if Britney Spears identifies herself as a person with disabilities, or what, if any, diagnoses she has received.
But by virtue of being under a conservatorship, we know that the court has determined that she is disabled, and has stripped away her civil rights because of that disability. So it’s inherently a civil rights/civil liberties issue.
What we don’t know is what the info the court had, what Britney has said about what she wants specifically, what other options have been tried, or what her lawyers have said.
So while it’s possible that this is an example of a thoughtful conservatorship that was implemented as the last resort and is being reviewed carefully, thoroughly, and regularly, that is not the norm for conservatorships, and it appears inconsistent with what we see of Britney publicly.
The ACLU is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, legal and advocacy organisation which has long advocated for conservatorships to be used as a last resort; mindful of the potential for ‘financial, physical, or emotional abuse’.
At the time of writing, Britney’s conservatorship has reportedly been extended through to February 1, 2021. Britney’s attorney, Samuel Ingham, now has up until September 18, 2020 to file a petition against this motion.
If you’re experiencing distressing thoughts and feelings, the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is there to support you. They’re open from 5pm–midnight, 365 days a year. Their national number is 0800 58 58 58 and they also have a webchat service if you’re not comfortable talking on the phone.
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CreditsThe New York Times and 2 others
The New York Times