The Government announced its intention to introduce a draft Bill to reform the 1983 Mental Health Act in the recent Queen’s Speech list of Bills.
Unfortunately the draft Bill (as we understand it) will have none of the children and young people-centred ‘early intervention’ measures that characterised the 2017 Green Paper: Transforming Children and Young People’s Mental Health. It is instead, a response to the Independent Review of the Mental Health Act 1983 by Sir Simon Wessely (a former President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists). There are some reforms to the ways in which people are treated in restraint and also improved provision for people with autistic spectrum conditions. However, an opportunity to enact legislation to protect children and young people when they first begin to manifest signs of becoming unwell has been missed.
This month, the Government released a paper entitled: Transforming Children and Young People’s Mental Health Implementation Programme.
Introducing the paper, the Government describes the contents as a ‘progress report’ on the introduction of ‘three core proposals’:
- New Mental Health Support Teams (Musts) in 20-25% of the country by 2023/23 that provide support and extra capacity for Early Intervention and help for mild to moderate mental health issues
- Training for senior mental health leads to implement an effective whole school or college approach to mental health and wellbeing in schools and colleges
- Pilots for a four-week waiting time for children and young peoples’ mental health services
The DFE also announced further funding following Covid-19 via the Wellbeing for Education Return/Recovery programmes.
The Child Mental Health Charter Campaign is interested to know your views on the Implementation document. What has your experience of extra help or funding been? None of the measures are legally binding.
Send your own response to: firstname.lastname@example.org
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