This issue opens with an article by @validconsent which underlines the profound challenges involved in our notion of ‘democratic psychiatry’. How does one provide a safe space for challenging and diverse opinions to be expressed: at a conference; on a psychiatric ward; on social media; or in the pages of our magazine? Those questions go to the very heart of Asylum’s collective struggle. They are crucial for those involved in the review of the Mental Health Act, as well as those who are framing responses to it. They are also key to understanding how debates about psychiatric medication can be conducted in ways that are respectful of deeply held and diverse views. These two subjects take up the majority of this issue of Asylum.