Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1014/28104

From The Socialist newspaper, 17 October 2018

Fully fund mental health services now

There are many factors that cause mental illness, but the present epidemic has capitalism and austerity at its heart

There are many factors that cause mental illness, but the present epidemic has capitalism and austerity at its heart   (Click to enlarge)

Mary Finch, East London Socialist Party

Stigma around mental health is decreasing, and that's definitely a good thing. But it's not nearly enough when services are being cut to the bone and most of us have been left without crucial lifelines.

It's not an exaggeration - people are dying because of the mental health crisis. It's led to such a drastic rise in suicides that the Tories were forced to appoint a new minister on World Mental Health Day to deal with the emergency.

Suicide prevention minister Jackie Doyle-Price has backed cuts which have decimated local services, including mental health support. Doyle-Price has also consistently voted to attack welfare - 91 times according to website They Work For You.

The link between benefit cuts and mental health problems has been well documented.

The Tories hope they can distract people from their role in exacerbating - even causing - this crisis.

Cuts and privatisation in the NHS have smashed counselling and support services. It's standard for people to wait months or even years to access crucial therapy.

Plenty are bounced around different services, each with very specific requirements designed to limit the number who try to access them.

Ending the mental health crisis isn't just about services. It's crucial to fight stigma.

Encouraging people to talk about their experiences is just one part. We need resources to educate people about the symptoms of mental illness, so they can recognise it in themselves and seek support.

Take obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) for example. How is someone supposed to recognise actual OCD symptoms - terrible intrusive thoughts and anxiety - when they're consistently told it's just about being clean and tidy?

We can't rely on charities to spread awareness and understanding of mental illness. It has to be a public service.

For that to happen, austerity must end.


A day in the life of a mental health support worker Juggling admin and emotion in the era of austerity

Sam Gleaden, mental health support worker

I wake up at 7am. No time to eat. No need to rush for the commute. I'm already at work.

I didn't sleep more than three hours because of residents waking up in the night and a no expense spared sofa bed from nineteen eighty something. It's me and 12 mental health care home residents to look after for the next six hours.

I work two 24-hour shifts a week on top of normal hours. I've already been at work since 1pm the previous day and since 5pm on my own.

I have to juggle medication, paperwork, health and safety inspections, financial admin, and more paperwork. Meanwhile, I somehow have to find time to engage with the complex lives of the residents. There's not much time to be emotionally supportive when you're running a care home on your own.

Often when I'm nearing the end of the shift, someone will come to me in a desperate emotional state. I'm usually so tired by this point I barely have the energy.

My main client has serious anger management issues relating to his psychosis. In 12 months here I haven't had any training on de-escalation or challenging behaviour.

Over half my pay goes on rent. I get a paltry 30 to 'sleepover' - there is no hourly rate for that time.

The residents here will see a mental health clinician once every four to six months. This is nothing more than lip service.


The cuts are the real burning injustice

The prime minister has pledged to tackle the "burning injustice of mental health". But the burning injustice is the inadequacy of provision from cutting resources.

Poverty and poor access to services are major triggers for some mental illnesses.

New research also indicates that women who are subject to sexual assault, domestic violence and harassment are more likely to suffer anxiety and depression.

Our society, our government in particular, is failing people. The answer is to throw out this Tory government and its neoliberal capitalist ideology and fight for a socialist society that puts people's mental and physical health at the centre.

Ian Hunter, Derby Socialist Party

Mental health facts

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 17 October 2018:


What we think

Tories' Brexit bust-up - general election now


News

Universal credit = universal misery

New anti-poll tax type revolt needed today

Homeless driven from Windsor streets for royal wedding: abolish the monarchy and end homelessness now!

Toxic fracking gets the go-ahead while protesters jailed

No to fat-cat top judges' 59k pay hike - fight for decent pay for criminal justice workers

Tory and Trump hypocrisy over murder of Saudi Arabian journalist


Mental health

Fully fund mental health services now


Workplace news

PCS union: nominate Chris Baugh as Left Unity candidate for assistant general secretary

Striking Brum home carers reject 'final' pay cut offer

South Western rail workers launch five-day safety strike to save guards

Uber drivers strike against unfair 'deactivation' and low pay

Bolton hospital workers strike

Grimethorpe dinner ladies stage all-out strike against redundancy

Cable makers' pay strike bites as production falls 33%

Newham finance staff fight pay and grading insult


International socialist news and analysis

Libres y Combativas: striking for women's rights in the Spanish state


Engels

The renewed relevance of Engels' classic Socialism: Utopian and Scientific


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Demo against far-right DFLA

Socialism - the podcast offering Marxist analysis for the movement against capitalism

'Corbyn-council' faces a choice: Implement or fight the cuts

Devon foster carers fight 30% cut in allowances

De Montfort freshers stall


Opinion

Peterloo film exposes bloody nature of capitalism

The Socialist Inbox


 

Home   |   The Socialist 17 October 2018   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Mental health:

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: A socialist response to the mental health crisis

triangleSave St Andrews mental health ward

triangleFurloughed worker speaks out: Let down by insecure contracts

triangleHackney & Islington Socialist Party: Bolivia - 12 months of turmoil

triangleNewcastle lockdown: stress and breakdowns

Health:

triangleWest London Socialist Party: The fight for women's health to be a trade union issue

triangleBoot private companies out of our NHS

triangleNHS white paper: no solution to failed Tory policies

triangleCovid workplace safety

Austerity:

triangleTories tout toilet tensions

triangleSwansea Socialist Party: The TUSC anti-austerity challenge in the Welsh parliament

triangleHelp fund a challenge to austerity at the ballot box - donate today!

Cuts:

triangleSave John Carroll Leisure Centre

triangleLiverpool Unite branch supports 'no cuts' budget strategy

NHS:

triangleSocial care: End privatisation and let workers decide how it's run

Depression:

triangleCoronavirus news in brief

Hospitals:

triangleTories admit market failure - we want our NHS back!

Poverty:

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

Welfare:

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis

26/2/21

Labour

Liverpool Labour meltdown - Fight for socialist policies

24/2/21

Schools

Johnson's 'road map' for schools: Act together to protect safety

24/2/21

Uber

Drivers win case - they are workers

24/2/21

Covid

Where's the road map to jobs and wages Boris?

24/2/21

Labour

Starmer's speech a return to New Labour

24/2/21

Covid

Garment workers and Covid: Dying for less than minimum wage

24/2/21

Privatisation

Social care: End privatisation and let workers decide how it's run

24/2/21

Vaccine

Vaccine algorithm can't solve capitalist inequality

23/2/21

Britain

The struggle needs an electoral arm

17/2/21

NHS

NHS white paper: no solution to failed Tory policies

17/2/21

Covid

Covid workplace safety

17/2/21

Independence

SNP's independence referendum 2 'roadmap'

17/2/21

Socialist Students

Strike back for free education

17/2/21

Abortion

Tory consultation on home-use abortion pills

17/2/21

Fire

Tory cladding money will not make us safe

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: [email protected]

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 075 4018 9052

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


February 2021

January 2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999