Theresa May on Mental Health

On 9th January 2017, Theresa May spoke at the England and Wales Charity Commission about encouraging equality within the UK, with a particular focus on improving the wellbeing of members of society through improved mental health services.

I’ve just listened to her speech all the way through and was delighted to hear the approach she took in her presentation on how we can improve mental health services within Britain. Encouraging people to “defeat the stigma” and “strengthen the bonds we share as humans”, May’s speech was almost inspiring. She addressed issues frankly and recognised some key points, such as the increase in self harm in the UK, and the challenges that social media brings.

In May’s governments’ new approach to mental health, May highlights our need to recognise our “responsibility to each other”, something I feel we could all do a little more. While I don’t necessarily agree with all her political ideas, I am very much with her based on Monday’s speech.

May discussed several ideas within her speech:

  • Pilot mental health first aid training for school and college staff to enable better support for children and teenagers
  • Encourage schools to work closely with the NHS in order to offer the most appropriate mental health care for children and teenagers
  • Break the stigma attached to mental health sufferers within the workplace
  • Review employment discrimination acts to ensure that those with mental health issues are supported within the workplace
  • Support those who are unemployed and suffer with┬ámental health issues to return to the workplace
  • Improve care within the community, offering clinics and crises cafes to ensure that people who are struggling have a place to go to get the help they need
  • Offer support and funding to charities and churches to improve their mental health support services
  • Improve online services to enable people to check their symptoms online and get access to appropriate therapies and treatments more quickly

At the end of her speech, May briefly mentioned the need to focus on suicide prevention, to reduce the 13 people who commit suicide in England everyday to none.

You can watch the full speech here: