A Theresa May U-turn the public CAN’T believe – improving mental health care

ESA sanctions ranked by disability: Notice that mental illness attracts by far the largest number of sanctions. Aren’t these the people who are most likely to commit suicide in such circumstances?

There are huge problems with any attempt by Conservatives to tackle the lack of services to help people with mental health issues. Most of those problems are due to funding cuts – by Conservatives.

There are huge objections to Mrs May’s plans. Feel free to mention them in the comment column below, because I want to focus on just one, highlighted in this tweet by David Jones:

“No mention of two big drivers of in our society: and

Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Debbie Abrahams picked up on the comment and responded:

“The point I made in &P PQs this afternoon. Fell on stoney ground I’m afraid.”

One of the pillars of This Site is the effect of the Work Capability Assessment administered by Atos and Capita on the mental health of sickness benefit claimants, possibly leading to their deaths.

So I was interested to see what Ms Abrahams said today, to Penny Mordaunt, who is apparently minister for disabled people, health and work (so does that mean she is there to make disabled people think they are healthy enough to work? Oh dear…). Here‘s what she said:

“People with mental health conditions are more likely to fail the work capability assessment and more likely to be sanctioned.

“At the same time, we know from independent research how damaging work capability assessments and sanctions are for people’s mental health.

“When will the Government take responsibility for the impact of their policies on mental health and ensure that timely, evidence-based support from trained mental health professionals is available for claimants with mental health conditions?

“Will the Secretary of State commit to scrapping the work capability assessment and punitive sanctions, as Labour has?”

Of course she didn’t.

So This Writer can only conclude that the latest announcement on mental health is just another attempt, by the Conservative Government, at ‘gaslighting’.

For those who aren’t in the know, ‘gaslighting’ is a particularly nasty mind game in which a manipulator (the Tory government) convinces a victim (the public) that something is happening, or has happened, when it has not.

Its intent is to sow seeds of doubt in the targets, hoping to make them question their own memory, perception, and sanity.

In other words, I fear the latest policy will make matters worse – not better.

But what do the Tories care?

If another few people with mental health problems die, that means fewer ESA payments every fortnight.

Plans to “transform” attitudes to mental health, with a focus on children and young people, have been announced by Theresa May.

Additional training for teachers, an extra £15m for community care, and improved support in the workplace were among measures announced by the PM.

Mental health experts said more funding was needed to improve services.

Source: Mental health reforms to focus on young people, says PM – BBC News

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  1. Christine Cullen January 10, 2017 at 12:57 am - Reply

    There is not one thing that Mrs May has suggested that will not need extra funding. So will it be available? I very much doubt it. Teachers are already working under duress and now they are also supposed to be performing “mental health first aid,” which will be inspected by OFSTEd.
    I’m now a retired Primary head but my colleagues who are still working are struggling to fill vacancies in their schools because of acute recruitment and retention problems, often forced to appoint agency teachers on a temporary contract because these supply teachers intend moving on within one or two terms. They mainly come from Canada and Australia via an agency. How are their mental health first aid skills I wonder?
    Where is the access to educational psychologists that used to be available from the LEAs? What happens in the government so-called “academies” and “free schools” that have no LEA support? Where is the quick referral to CAMHS that used to be available? Teachers are supposed to be educating. We are not trained or equipped to diagnose mental heath problems and administer first aid for them. We expect to pick up warning signals and refer to the trained experts in the field like we do for abused children. Exactly what kind of “training” will teachers get, and will it come out of the ever-shrinking school budgets?
    This government is going from the ridiculous to the surreal!

  2. Lorraine Hayton January 10, 2017 at 1:20 am - Reply

    Is this concerning the tackling of stigma? What is stigma but an idea, an opinion? What actual help has been offered? More bluster saying nothing….

  3. jeffrey davies January 10, 2017 at 7:59 am - Reply

    aktion t4 at its best hitlers having a last laugh perhaps you should supply that clean towel and a bar of soap on your way to that help one will not get

  4. Christine Bergin January 10, 2017 at 10:25 am - Reply

    This govt has been sneering at the various professions like Teachers, Doctors,the Legal profession,(in fact just about anyone who isnt either a banker or wealthy). It really is no surprise that when you attack people’s selfworth in such an insulting manner then you get a result of a lot of people being made to doubt their worthyness and have self esteem problems. Not too long before depression and mental instability set in particularly with our MSM winding it up and dis-respecting everyone in sight. Atos and C(r)apita have even asked why people havent committed suicide FFS. Struggling to get by with few resources, no hope and no end in sight is soul destroying. This govt has done such damage to the self belief in this country for now and for future genrations I could almost believe they are ‘pod’ people sent to destroy earth from within.

  5. Roland Laycock January 10, 2017 at 10:31 am - Reply

    Actions speak louder than words

  6. Barry Davies January 10, 2017 at 10:56 am - Reply

    By “fail the Work capacity assessment” does that mean you are deemed fit for work because you have failed to prove you can not work? surely you should need to pass the assessment to be deemed capable of working, however as we know it has nothing to do with capacity to do anything whatsoever it is just a means of cutting aid for the most vulnerable and needy. One has to wonder if the sudden interest in mental health issues has something to do with the increasing amount of the with mental health issues going to prison where it costs far more than other forms of care.

  7. Dez January 10, 2017 at 12:02 pm - Reply

    I guess she is waking up to the body count being far greater for mental health sufferers and politically not good PR…..not that she gives two things about public opinion and adverse PR. Still a talker does not do diddly squat and still her head is where the sun does not shine and she can’t here anything..

  8. mrmarcpc January 10, 2017 at 3:32 pm - Reply

    If anyone believes May with her saying she’s going to look after us mentally ill people, then you’re a complete moron, it is all lies, she proved that when she didn’t say about the money for mental health and that it would be ring-fenced like other health money is, it’s all one big tory con as always!

  9. casalealex January 10, 2017 at 8:40 pm - Reply

    Mental Health Services
Department of Health
    Next answer » « Previous answer All Written Answers on 23 Jan 2015

    Chris Ruane (Vale of Clwyd, Labour)
    To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what proportion of the overall health budget was spent on psychological therapies in each of the last 10 years.
    • Hansard source (Citation: HC Deb, 23 January 2015, cW)

    Norman Lamb (The Minister of State, Department of Health; North Norfolk, Liberal Democrat)

    Information on the proportion of the overall health budget that was spent on psychological therapies in each of the last 10 years is not available.

  10. casalealex January 10, 2017 at 8:50 pm - Reply

    message from MIND for better mental health

    Over one million people are supported by benefits because of their mental health problem. That’s a huge number.

    Yet we know that for the majority, the system doesn’t work like it should. That is why campaigning for improvements is such a big priority for us.

    Recent news stories and events have shown just how much there is to do. Whether it has been statistics showing that people with mental health problems aren’t being helped back-to-work,  proposed cuts to benefits or fake stories being used by the DWP, there is always something going on.

    It can be upsetting to hear these things and hard to keep up with the latest news, but we want you to know that over the coming weeks we’ll be tackling these issues – with your help.

    • Next week we’ll go in front of an important committee of MPs to talk about benefit cuts.

    • The week after we’ll be asking the Employment Minister to fundamentally change how people with mental health problems are treated by the system that’s supposed to help them back to work.

    • In October we’ll be opposing the benefit cuts as the Welfare Bill comes back to Parliament.  

    We need your help to make sure our voices are heard.
    When Sophie goes in front of the committee next week we want her to tell MPs why cutting benefits is such a bad idea. If you currently receive or used to receive ESA, it would be great if you could tell us in one sentence:

    What would receiving £30 less a week would mean for your wellbeing?

    We will try to use as many responses as possible. We’ll also be posting a link to the live video stream of the session and live tweeting from Parliament on 10th September 2015. Be sure to look out for it.

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