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Medway Liberal Democrats are supporting World Mental Health Day on 10th October 

September 29, 2020 7:47 AM
By Medway Liberal Democrats - Alan Wells

WMHD logo 2020Local Liberal Democrats are proud to support World Mental Health Day on 10th October. We know this year has been a tough one, particularly for people living with mental illness and in these challenging times, we believe that the future of mental health care should be community-based and locally focused. Helping people experiencing mental health not just survive, but thrive.

Liberal Democrats have campaigned this year against the Tory led Medway Council's proposal to close the community centre at 147 Nelson Road in Gillingham, because we believe that with a population of 270,000 people, Medway's own health trust should be able to provide residential mental health care to local people within the towns. Plus, out of area referrals negatively impact on the quality of patient treatment and would cost the NHS more!.

The facility provides support to vulnerable adults with a range of daytime group activities, 1-1 outreach support, and opportunities to develop resilience and independence skills. If the Centre closes, people will lose access to vital professional support to keep them well.

Local Liberal Democrat campaigner Alan Collins, who lives with a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, said " Too many people living with mental health problems are not receiving the support they need, particularly those who require acute or ongoing care.

With the right care and support from family, friends and healthcare professionals, most of us who experience mental ill health are able to thrive and live successful lives. That's why it is so important that everyone has access to quality care, especially as a result of the additional impact the consequences of Covid-19 has had on people's mental health."

And this campaign is not our only mental health campaign. In 2017 we campaigned about the then mental issues after the closure of the Mental Health Unit at Medway Hospital in 2013 and delivered a petition to The Department of Health.

Nationally, our health and social care heroes have supported this country in a time of crisis. Now it's our turn to support them, and tackle the growing mental health crisis in the health and care sector. Many key workers haven't recovered from working during the pandemic this Spring, and these are the same workers we are asking to fight COVID-19 on the frontline again this Autumn. That's why at the Liberal Democrat conference we voted overwhelmingly to support a package improving mental health support for those health and care workers.

Liberal Democrats will always care for people's mental health and will continue to campaign for better mental health care all year round.

Medway demands better, Liberal Democrats demand better.

ENDS

Notes for Editors

World Mental Health Day is an international day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy against social stigma. It was first celebrated in 1992 at the initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health, a global mental health organization with members and contacts in more than 150 countries. Website: https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/world-mental-health-day

................................................................................................................................................................................................................Liberal Democrats are calling for a comprehensive package to support the mental health needs of health and social care staff. Liberal Democrat Conference voted to support:

  • Expanding the COVID-19 support hotline to a 24/7 service

  • Creating a signposting service so health and care staff can more easily access the support available to them

  • Guaranteeing a universal mental health support service that can be accessed by all health and social care workers

  • Removing HR practices which reinforce a culture of presenteeism

  • Introducing an 'occupational health passport' so workers do not have to relive mental health traumas every time they start a new job

  • Ensuring access to reflective practice groups with protected time to help prevent longer term mental ill health

  • Taking steps to encourage every setting to have a qualified mental health first aider