OUR CHARTER CAMPAIGN MILESTONES
Since we started our Child Mental Health Charter Campaign we’ve been very busy! On May 16th Sir David Amess
MP raised the urgent need for a reform of the 1983 Mental Health Act prioritising the needs of children and
young people on the floor of the House of Commons. This is a unique advance for our campaign and we are
extremely grateful to Sir David and his team.
PTUK hope that it will inspire our registrants to ‘go the extra mile’ in their efforts to gain support for
the Charter from policy-makers. Please contact Monika Jephcott and Jeff Thomas to find out how to do this
But in the meantime, this is what we’ve been up to!
- Meetings at Westminster with Sir David Amess MP, Steve McCabe MP, Ruth George MP, Tom Brake MP: held by
Monika and Jeff, Campaign Spokesperson, Helen Clark, Phil Royal, Kate Day APPG on A Fit and Healthy
- Future meetings at Westminster scheduled with Julie Cooper MP, Sir Barry Shearman MP: Monika, Jeff and
- Registrants have held meetings with some MPs in their constituencies including Michelle Donelan, David
Liddington, Heidi Allen
- Registrant meetings scheduled with MPs Siobhain McDonagh, Sir Mike Penning• Questions tabled for us by
George Howarth MP
- Letter to Mike Hancock (Secretary of State for Health and Social Services) written on our behalf by
George Howarth MP
- Ministerial letter from Jackie Doyle- Price to George Howarth MP, mentioning for the first time, the
Government’s intention to ‘reform mental health law, and the Government will develop and bring forward
legislation when Parliamentary time allows.’
- Promise to write to the Secretary of State for Health from Tom Brake MP• Promise to put down Written
Questions for us from Ian Austin MP• Promise to apply for an Adjournment Debate on the floor of the
House of Commons by Steve McCabe MP
- Early Day Motion 2285 tabled for us in the House of Commons by Steve McCabe MP. To date 42 MPs from all
parties have signed.
- Has YOUR MP signed this EDM yet? Ask them to sign up NOW and show their constituents that they are
supporting children, their families and carers and everyone who works professionally with them
IMPORTANT CAMPAIGN EVENT FOR THE FUTURE!
: The Jubilee Room 4-6pm. Reception at the House of Commons for the Child Mental Health
Charter Campaign, hosted by Sir David Amess MP 29th October
PLEASE KEEP IN TOUCH!
PTUK needs to know any and all feedback you have from contact with your own MP about the Child Mental Health
Please feed back to Monika and Jeff – and do contact them for advice using email: firstname.lastname@example.org
THE QUEEN’S SPEECH: 14th OCTOBER 2019
We have a date for the Queen’s Speech and it is 14th October 2019.
Today, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that he has asked the Queen to suspend Parliament for 5 weeks
from early September. That means that MPs’ return to Westminster on 3rd September will be for just a few
days before Parliament is prorogued.
The surprise announcement has caused dismay and concern from some politicians from all parties who have
suggested that Number 10 has made the move in order to outwit those who are determined to prevent a ‘No
However, for Child Mental Health Charter Campaigners the announcement should represent both a challenge and
The countdown has begun and for Registrants:
- If you have NOT yet done so, write to book an appointment with your local MP. Ask them to lobby Boris
Johnson NOW for the inclusion of a new Mental Health Bill in his Queen’s Speech that puts the needs of
children at its centre
- Ask them to sign EDM 2285 as SOON as they return to Parliament on 3rd September
- Contact Jeff and Monika. Let them know exactly what contact you have had with your MP to date. We need
to know; even if the MPs were uninterested
14th October is now our TOP PRIORITY. It’s ‘all hands to the plough’ and the countdown starts NOW!
We look forward to hearing from you and watch this space!
25th September 2019 - Parliament RESUMES!
Please note the word ‘resumes’ – it is important!
Parliament has not been ‘recalled’ because, according to the Supreme Court judgement, delivered yesterday by Lady Hale, the prorogation was ILLEGAL. This means that business continues as usual and instruments such as EDMs which fall when Parliament is prorogued continue as well!
Therefore, our EDM 2285 is back on the Order Paper with its (to date) 54 signatures. Registrants must now step up their campaigns as of urgency, asking their MPs to sign up and show their commitment to the Child Mental Health Charter and a new Mental Health Act that will put the needs of children first and foremost.
We want that piece of legislation to be announced in the next Queen’s Speech but when will that be?
The Government has not said and probably does not know – but as far as we are concerned, the pressure is on to get as many signatures as possible to add to the 54 enlightened pioneers who have already placed their faith in the children of this country.
OUR EDM 2285 IS OPEN AGAIN FOR BUSINESS!
THE CHALLENGE TO INCREASE THE NUMBER OF SIGNATORIES IS NOW ON!
14th September, 2019 - NOW IS THE TIME TO STEP UP OUR CAMPAIGN!
On 29th October 2019, the
Child Mental Health Charter Campaign will be holding a Reception from 4-6pm in
the Jubilee Room at the House of Commons.
Hosted by Sir David Amess MP, this will
be a real campaign landmark; a chance to celebrate how much we have achieved
and look forward to all the work we still have to do. We expect to be joined by many of the MPs from
all political parties who have signed EDM 2285; also other distinguished
supporters and speakers. This will be an excellent opportunity for CMHC
campaign backers to meet and mingle, but as with everything we do – it will be
an important WORKING event; not least including the launch of a new and updated
Early Day Motion as our campaign enters its second stage.
We have had a fantastic start!
Who would have thought just four months
ago, when we launched the Charter, that so many MPs from a full range of
political parties would sign the EDM, ask Parliamentary Questions for us, write to Secretaries of
State, Mental Health Ministers and Prime Ministers ( there have been two!) and
praise our campaign by name on the floor of the House of Commons?
Monika, Jeff and Helen are incredibly grateful
and appreciative of the meetings that we have had with MPs at Westminster (
process ongoing and thanks most recently to Dame Louise Ellman and Holly Lynch)
and for all the meetings that Registrants have had with MPs in their local
constituencies. This is how we are building a truly national campaign and now
we are encouraging other respected organisations with the interests of children
at heart to join us. Our priority is for the introduction a new Mental Health
Act with the needs of children at its heart. The 1983 Mental Health Act is way
out of date and if this had been the case for any other aspect of health policy it would be a national scandal!
Mental health has long been a policy ‘Cinderella’.
The needs of children are traditionally the last to be addressed by governments
across party political divides. Together this has been a toxic cocktail and the
Child Mental Health Charter Campaign aims to halt that trend.
Everybody who is currently watching the
national turmoil surrounding Brexit will be confused about how our national
political processes will be affected.
Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, prorogued
Parliament only days ago – but now we hear that next week, the Supreme Court of
the United Kingdom may instruct him
to recall it. The Prime Minister has set an unexpected early date of 14th
October for a Queen’s Speech when he will unveil a list of proposed Bills for
the next Parliamentary session.
But there may be a General Election shortly afterwards and then there will be
another Queens’ Speech and possibly even a different
We have NO WAY of knowing what will
happen – but one thing is clear. The
1983 Mental Health Act is not serving the needs of the children of today and
therefore, the society of tomorrow. Present and future generations are losing
out and Brexit or not, those serious and long-term problems are going to remain
unless we continue to put constant pressure one WHATEVER Government we have.
In just four months, Government has
moved from verbally stating that mental illness is a ‘burning injustice’ for children to pledging that the 2017 Green
Paper will be updated by a White Paper this year; finally that ‘legislation
will be introduced this year.’ It is now the responsibility of each and every
one of us to ensure that Boris Johnson or indeed, any future Prime Minister must
honour that pledge to children and we will keep on campaigning UNTIL THEY DO.
It is now more important than ever that
Registrants continue their excellent work in arranging meetings with their constituency
MPs. Those MPs of all parties must be asked to write to the Prime Minister and
ask him to update the 1983 Act.
From 29th October onwards, we
will have a new, updated campaigning EDM for them to sign – but we should not wait
until then. Every day that an MP is in their constituency and away from
Westminster is a day when they could be seeing a Registrant and discussing the
Child Mental Health Charter Campaign.
The campaign has, to date, given hope to
children, their parents and carers and those who work with them professionally.
Thank you to everybody for your amazing work so far.
JOIN US NOW ON THE EXCITING SECOND PHASE
OF OUR JOURNEY TO MAKE NEW MENTAL HEALTH PROVISION FOR CHILDREN A REALITY.
ONLY JUST BEGUN
- WE’RE GETTING THE MESSAGE THROUGH! GOVERNMENT IS LISTENING! 2nd September 2019
Jeff and Helen were delighted to have an excellent meeting in Westminster with Andrew Rossindell MP during the time of the Conservative leadership contest.
Andrew was a vigorous supporter of Boris Johnson’s campaign and we thank him very much indeed for discussing the Child Mental Health Charter with us and our campaign for the inclusion in the next Queens’ Speech of a new Mental Health Bill with the urgent needs of children at its heart.
We are also delighted and very grateful that Andrew has put down a series of Parliamentary Questions for us on this important matter.
A week is a short time in politics and a few weeks is a lifetime!
Now Boris Johnson is Prime Minister and has set a date for the Queen’s Speech of 14th October 2019.
We have asked ALL Registrants to ‘go the extra mile’ in contacting their local MP; asking them to sign EDM 2285 and write to the Prime Minister, making the case for a new Mental Health Bill that will protect children to be included in the Queen’s Speech.
Now, it is FANTASTIC to see that our message is really getting through!
The Government has posted this great new update on its ‘Education in the media blog.’
‘Mental health is just as important as physical health – and should be treated as such. This government has made mental health a priority. On top of teaching pupils about mental health through the new health education curriculum, we will also be providing guidance to schools on the different tools available to schools to measure pupil wellbeing for different purposes.’
LET’S NOW ‘GO THE EXTRA MILE!’ OUR CAMPAIGN IS MAKING THE DIFFERENCE!
CONTACT YOUR MP BECAUSE THE COUNTDOWN TO THE QUEEN’S SPEECH HAS BEGUN!
CHILDREN NEED YOU TO DO THIS TODAY!
2019 - WHERE THEY LIVE AFFECTS CHILDREN’S MENTAL HEALTH
The Prime Minister’s visits to European leaders and the G7 summit are leading the news; but shocking facts
about the condition of children’s mental health mean that there must be NO RELAXATION in the efforts of each
and every one of us to persuade Boris Johnson that a new Mental Health Bill with children’s interests at its
heart, must take priority of place in his first Queen’s Speech.
Research published in ‘The Guardian’ on 20th August (https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/growing-up-in-air-polluted-areas-linked-to-mental-health-issues)
claims that children who spend their childhood in areas with high levels of air pollution are more likely to
develop mental illness later in life.
In January, research findings suggested that children living in the more polluted parts of London were more
likely to have depression by the age of 18, but the latest findings added to the worrying picture and
linked air pollution to an increased risk of other mental health problems for children including bi-polar
disorder and some personality disorders.
At a time when the environment has soared to the pinnacle of the policy agenda, surely this serious link to
children’s mental health should be investigated further?
On 21st August, an article in ‘The Daily Telegraph’ (https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2019/08/20/children-growing-shipping-containers-due-lack-council-housing/)
revealed that some children are living in shipping containers because councils do not have sufficient
accommodation to house them.
Children’s Commissioner, Anne Longfield published the shocking figures, showing that almost a quarter of a
million children could be without a permanent home in England and are living in shipping containers,
B&Bs and office blocks. Her report ‘Bleak Houses: tackling the crisis of family homelessness in England’
estimates that there could be more than 210, 00 homeless children in England.
Responding to the Commissioner, Almudena Lara, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at NSPCC said:
‘These descriptions of poky, dangerous conditions belong in a Dickensian novel, but instead they paint a
picture of life in the 21st century for many families.
Homelessness has terrible consequences on a child’s mental and emotional state and families should not
have to endure such a punishing way of life.’
Children’s mental health needs in 21st century England are now at crisis point.
There has never been a stronger case for a new Mental Health Act that puts children FIRST.
The House of Commons sits again on 3rd September.
If you have not already asked your own MP to be a Children’s Mental Health Champion, then there is no
time like the present and a child who lives somewhere near to you simply CANNOT wait!
DO IT TODAY - AND DON’T FORGET!
TELL US HOW YOU GOT ON!
- WELCOME TO NADINE DORRIES 17th August
Boris Johnson, the new Prime Minister has, as expected, refreshed his Ministerial team. Some have remained in
post including the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock MP. However, Mr Johnson has
‘shuffled the pack’ and Jackie Doyle-Price, formerly Under Secretary of State in the Department of Health
and Social Care and Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, has now left the Government.
Ms Doyle Price has been replaced in post by Nadine Dorries; the MP for Mid Bedfordshire since 2005.
Child Mental Health Charter campaigners have seen significant progress in Government thinking about mental
health during Ms Doyle Price’s tenure. At the start of our campaign in March 2019, Theresa May’s Government
had published a Mental Health Green Paper – and that seemed to be that!
Then we started to make waves!
It is just four months since we began our campaign to secure the inclusion of a new Mental Health Bill (with
the needs of children at its heart) in the next Queen’s Speech. In that brief time span, Ms Doyle Price
promised first that the Green Paper would be followed by a White Paper – and finally that it was the
Government’s firm intention to legislate.
This is record progress in super-quick time, but what will happen with a change of Prime Minister and a new
Minister with responsibility for Mental Health?
There are ‘green shoots’ of hope for CMHC campaigners!
- Prior to Boris Johnson’s victory in the Conservative leadership election campaign, Helen and Jeff met
with key Johnson supporter, Andrew Rossindell MP
- Mr Johnson then wrote about mental health in ‘The Daily Telegraph’ and stressed the importance of
physical activity for children’s mental health and wellbeing
Nadine Dorries, Boris Johnson’s new Under Secretary of State with responsibility for Mental Health and
Suicide Prevention, is somebody who brings definitive career experience to the role.
Prior to her election in 2005, Ms Dorries worked as a nurse in Warrington, Liverpool and Westminster. She
then spent a year in Zambia as head of a community school. On her return to the UK, Nadine founded ‘Company
Kids’ Ltd’ a supplier of day-care services for the children of working parents.
It is encouraging that the new Minster responsible for taking important decisions about children’s mental
health is somebody with relevant professional experience that should be useful as she undertakes her new
We look forward to discussing the Child Mental Health Charter with Nadine Dorries and explaining why its Six
Principles should be the framework of new Mental Health legislation for children.
We will invite her to our Jubilee Room Reception in the House of Commons on 29th October 2019 and hope that
she will join us at that important event for the campaign.
- LEADING CHILDREN’S CHARITY SAYS THAT THE MENTAL HEALTH OF OVER 1 MILLION CHILDREN
COULD BE ENDANGERED BY NHS COMMISSIONING 12th August
MPs may be away from their desks, but the crisis in children’s mental health is not on holiday!
According to NSPCC research (9th August):
- 4 out of 5 of the latest annual mental health plans published by the NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups
are not planning properly for the needs of vulnerable children – who are not even ‘recognised’ in the
- The new regional NHS partnerships cover much larger geographical areas and children who have experienced
the trauma of abuse or neglect are at risk of simply ‘slipping through the net’
- These children are likelier to develop a range of problems such as PTSD, depression, anxiety and eating
In Cheshire and Merseyside alone, the mental health of 68,000 children is in danger of being simply bypassed
The NSPCC calls for NHS England:
- To commit to vulnerable children by putting their needs at the heart of its implementation of the NHS
‘Long Term Plan’
- To provide greater accountability and oversight with more transparency from commissioners about how
children’s mental health services are funded and planned
- To ensure that decisions about what mental health services are provided for children nationwide are
based on a detailed assessment of local needs, including specific reference to vulnerable children.
I will be writing to MPs in Cheshire and Merseyside and asking them to commit to supporting the mental health
needs of all the children in their constituencies by signing up to our Child Mental Health Charter Campaign.
I hope that it will be possible to arrange to meet some of them in the near future at the House of Commons to
discuss the pertinent issues in greater depth.
The CMHC Campaign welcomes the NSPCC’s findings and hopes that the NSPCC agrees with us that it is essential
that a new Mental Health Act is included in the next Queen’s Speech that prioritises the needs of children.
If any Registrant has links with the NSPCC locally, now is an ideal time to arrange a visit; tell them about
our Charter Campaign and ask them to sign up to register their support. As always, let us know how you
Remember – we are stronger together!
That can only be good for all children and the people who care for them and work with them.
- HOW MARGINAL IS YOUR MP? 11th August,
We are well into the short Parliamentary Recess, but politics as we know it has not stopped and time has not
stood still – indeed far from it! This Sunday morning, we are swamped by articles from all quarters of the
media with predictions of an imminent General Election.
Will Prime Minister Boris Johnson announce his intention to ‘go to the country’ immediately upon MPs’ return
to the House of Commons on September 3rd?
Might he wait to win (or lose) a Vote of Confidence and then call a General Election – making sure to
pre-empt the ‘Do or Die’ Brexit deadline of 31st October?
Could the Prime Minister even hold a General Election immediately after a ‘Deal or no Deal’ Brexit on 31st
Who can say?
However, one thing is certain: the nation is on ‘General Election alert’; the Prime Minister’s spending
announcements on the NHS, the police and prisons sound suspiciously like ‘poll sweeteners,’ and by the time
the Child Mental Health Charter Campaign holds its reception in the Jubilee Room of the House fo Commons on
29th October 2019, we may in fact, have a new Government!
But whether that is a Conservative Government, led by Boris Johnson that will be responsible for introducing
the next Queen’s Speech, or a Labour Government led by Jeremy Corbyn – or even a Coalition Government
led by Johnson, Corbyn or AN Other, our mission remains the same:
A new Mental Health Bill to be included in the next Queen’s Speech (the Government’s traditional method of
setting out its forthcoming programme of work) that will put the interests children at its heart
This is what we are working to achieve, Recess or no Recess and regardless of the political persuasion of the
When a General Election is called, the Child Mental Health Charter Campaign will be sending a letter to every
MP who currently represents a marginal constituency (a seat held by the incumbent with a majority of 5,000
We will be asking them:
- To sign up to the Child Mental Health Charter Campaign and its Six Guiding Principles
- To pledge to campaign for a new Mental Health Act to be introduced at the first possible opportunity
that will put the interests of all children at its heart.
There are 51 MPs already who will not be receiving a letter from us at such a busy time!
This is because THEY HAVE ALREADY SIGNED EDM 2285!
If you have not yet contacted your own constituency MP to ask them to sign this important Motion, please do
so as an absolute TOP PRIORITY this August.
The CMHC Campaign will be very grateful to you – but more importantly, so will children everywhere; their
families and carers and everybody who works professionally with children (regardless of where those children
live, or what their economic circumstances may be) in any way whatsoever.
We’ll be contacting you soon with further news.
Don’t forget to tell Jeff and Monika about all the responses that you are getting (whatever they are) as you
help us by spreading the great news about the CMHC Campaign!
- MPs may be about to pack their bags and head for sunny climes (or their constituencies; in the
present heat wave it amounts to the same thing) but MPs who support the Child Mental Health Charter are
still at their desks and performing a public service! 25th July, 2019
I am delighted to be able to report that, less than 24 HOURS SINCE BORIS JOHNSON BECAME PRIME MINISTER, Sir
David Amess MP has written to him on our behalf, asking the new PM to guarantee that he will include a new
Mental Health Bill, prioritising the needs of children in his first Queen’s Speech!
On behalf of the CMHC campaign, I would like to thank Sir David and all his hard-working staff for everything
that they have done and continue to do to help all those children who struggle in the UK every day with
mental health problems spanning all levels and degrees of severity that are just not being met.
If Sir David can go that extra mile, so can we all!
I hope that Sir David’s exemplary enthusiasm and commitment will inspire us all to do that little bit more to
make the campaign succeed today and every day!
- New Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has appointed his Cabinet. For CMHC campaigners, the main point is
that Matt Hancock remains in his post as Health Secretary. 25th July, 2019
We are most grateful to MPs George Howarth, Sir David Amess and Tom Brake who have written directly to Mr
Hancock; alerting him to our campaign and above all, the need for a new Mental Health Act, prioritising the
needs of children to be included in the next Queen’s Speech.
When our helpful MP campaigners first started writing to Mr Hancock, Theresa May was the Prime Minister. She
had already issued a Green Paper on Mental Health, but the indications were that in effect, the much needed
reform would be ‘this year – next year – sometime –NEVER!’ to quote a well-worn ditty.
Well – we weren’t having that!
Our determined and energetic campaign saw Mrs May (and her Health Secretary, Matt Hancock) moving
significantly from what was a ‘Green Paper red traffic light’ to a pledge to publish a White Paper before
the end of 2019 and a firm promise to legislate to replace the outdated 1983 Mental Health Act.
During the Conservative leadership election, Jeff, Helen and Monika were fortunate to secure a meeting with
key Johnson supporter and Romford MP, Andrew Rossindell.
No less than three days later, Mr Johnson wrote about mental health in ‘The Daily Telegraph’ and highlighted
the importance of physical activity in preserving the good mental health and wellbeing of children.
Now, with Matt Hancock still in post as his Health Secretary, we hope to make further progress;
building upon what we have already told this Minister, instead of starting from scratch with somebody
who is both new to the post and the issue.
We hope that our keen MP supporters will redouble their efforts and sharpen their pens again. I think Matt
Hancock needs to receive some more letters in support of the Child Mental Health Charter Campaign!
Today, MPs sit at Westminster for the last time before a short recess.
The House re-opens for business on 3rd September; closing again for the short party political conference
season. This means that many MPs will be in their constituencies and so I urge Registrants to step up their
efforts to make contact with them. We want them to sign EDM 2285 as a top priority. So far, 51 from
all parties have done so but we need more!
Thank you also to Halifax MP, Holly Lynch who will meet Helen, Monika and Jeff at Westminster in the autumn.
If your MP has been helpful, please write to your local newspaper, and send us a link to the published
Above all, we will only succeed with a ‘grassroots’ constituency-based campaign as well as one necessarily
benefitting from well-targeted Westminster activity.
We’re in it to win it – for children, their families and those who work for and with them.
- Our grateful thanks today to Janet Daby MP for becoming the 50th MP to sign our EDM! This is a
milestone – we now need another 50 signatures so that we will become a contender for a live debate on the
floor of the House of Commons! 23rd July, 2019
Thank you to all the MPs who have signed the EDM – and if you have not contacted your local MP as yet and
asked them to sign, now is the time to do it! Don’t forget to contact Monika and Jeff to let them know
how you get on.
Helen was delighted to meet Janet at the House of Commons today and it is great to know that she will be
using her considerable experience to help with the campaign.
Tomorrow, Boris Johnson will take over as Prime Minister from Theresa May. He made some welcome references to
mental health in his successful election campaign and now we really do need him to commit to including a
Mental Health Bill that prioritises the needs of children in his first Queen’s Speech.
We must make sure that children’s mental health is at the very top of his in-tray.
Help us to create another milestone by contacting your MP today!
- CHILD MENTAL HEALTH CHARTER SUPPORTER ELECTED AS LIB DEM LEADER! 22nd July,
The Child Mental Health Charter Campaign warmly extends its congratulations to Jo Swinson MP, who was elected
today as the first ever woman leader of the Liberal Democratic Party.
We are especially delighted because Jo is one of those excellent and dedicated MPs from all parties who have
signed Early Day Motion 2285.
Now our campaign has a party Leader as one of its registered supporters and this is wonderful news as we step
up our campaign for a new Mental Health Act, prioritising the needs of children to be included in the next
This is now a great time for every Registrant to redouble their valiant efforts to secure appointments with
their local MPs to discuss our Child Mental Health Charter and the six essential Principles at its heart.
Jo’s election is great news and we congratulate her.
We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Jo and ALL our ‘Charter MPs’ for their ongoing and valuable
2019 - BORIS JOHNSON SPEAKS OUT: DAILY TELEGRAPH 16th JULY 2019
‘Tackling any sort of decline in young people’s overall well-being will be a key pillar in my programme for
I can also clarify that any government I lead will seek to reduce childhood obesity and increase the amount
of physical activities our children are exposed to. The health and wellbeing of the next generation of young
people is a top priority for me…..
We have a responsibility to do all we can to facilitate and encourage healthy participation and continual
engagement in sport. I am also aware that the mental health of our children …. is intrinsically tied to the
positive link between participation and general wellbeing.’
We hope that Mr Johnson will build upon these observations, supported by the Child Mental Health Charter
Campaign and the APPG on A Fit and Healthy Childhood and will include a new Mental Health Bill,
prioritising the needs of children in his first Queen’s Speech if he becomes Prime Minister.
Reforming the woefully out-dated 1983 Act would indeed be a groundbreaking piece of domestic
Helen Clark: APPG Lead Author and Spokesperson for the Child Mental Health Charter Campaign.
2019 - We are delighted to
report that David Amess MP who has been so helpful to our campaign has agreed to write to the new Prime
Minister about the importance of including Mental Health legislation (with the needs of children as
outlined by our Charter Principles) in his first Queen’s Speech.
Jeff and Helen had an excellent meeting at Westminster with Andrew Rossindell MP and his team. Andrew
agreed to help the campaign in a variety of ways and to impress upon the new Prime Minister (when
appointed) the urgent need for a new Mental Health Act that fully serves the needs of 21st century
children and their families.
Jeff explained that a welcome message would be an economic one! Our proposals would represent a good use
of existing budgets and projections rather than simply ‘throwing money’ at a problem and hoping for the
best. This might be a persuasive argument for Registrants to adopt when discussing the campaign with
their local MPs.
Tom Brake has received a reply from Health Minister, Jackie Doyle Price in response to his letter written at
our request. 6th July, 2019
And progress has now been made!
Ms Doyle-Price now states that the Government will be issuing a White Paper on Mental Health and this is
extremely important as White Papers are used by Governments as public expressions of a firm intent to
Before we began our campaign, there was no guarantee of this at all – and indeed, we were told ‘off the
record’ that the 2017 Green Paper would be all that the Government would be issuing on the matter of mental
health. Green Papers have no official status and there is no obligation upon Government to implement their
Ms Doyle-Price also heralds an Autumn Awareness Campaign on Mental Health with some emphasis on the needs of
babies, children and parents.
However, Mrs May will be out of 10 Downing Street in less than a month. It is now essential that we all
redouble our efforts to encourage MPs to put pressure on the new Prime Minster to carry out Mrs May’s pledge
If you have not made an appointment to see your local MP, please now make it a top priority. Do let Jeff,
Monika and the campaign website team how you get on and if you need any help and advice we are here to help.
We are of course, most grateful to Tom for all his assistance, interest and enthusiasm.
It is very much appreciated as always.
July, 2019 - Our ground-breaking Child Mental
Health Charter Campaign has NEVER been more timely or important.
Ahead of the Local Government Association’s Annual Conference in Bournemouth this week, the LGA have
- Social Services are seeing more than 560 cases of child mental health disorders every day – an increase
of more than 50% in just 4 years
- Council leaders are calling for the Government to give a bumper financial boost to the funding of
Children’s Services in the Spending Review
- Children’s Services face a £3.1billion funding gap by 2025
- Since 2010, Councils have seen an 84% increase in the number of children on child protection plans to
keep them safe from harm
The LGA is today warning of ‘A children’s mental health crisis’ because Councils simply do not have the money
to fund these vital services.
If Registrants have not yet arranged an appointment to see their local MP, NOW is the time to do it!
This is vital in respect of all MPs, but especially if the MP is a Conservative. He or she must be
asked to tell Conservative leadership candidates, Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt that children cannot wait.
They must ask them to guarantee that under their tenure as Prime Minister, they will pledge to bring in a
Bill to prioritise children’s mental health services in their very first Queen’s Speech
No reform of the 1983 Mental Health Act will be fit for purpose unless the needs of children (as outlined in
our Child Metal Health Charter) are right at the heart of any new reform!
Tell us how you get on!
- Nationally, news headlines have now been completely captured by the
Conservative leadership contest between Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson. 30th June,
We might have hoped that, with the candidate choice having now narrowed to a straight choice, there would
have been the opportunity for a REAL debate on a full range of policies. Sadly, as ‘The Sunday Times’
tells us today, this contest has been reduced to the level of:
‘A hard Brexit bidding war’.
Candidates know only too well that their stewardship of the keys to Number 10 will depend on the votes of
around 160,000 Conservative party members in the country. Rightly or wrongly, they are perceived to have
judged that Brexit is the only issue that will interest this particular electorate.
NOW IS THE TIME TO PROVE THEM WRONG
The Child Mental Health Charter Campaign now asks all Registrants to write to their MP if they have not
yet done so.
It is essential to write to MPs from all political parties, but it is especially important at this time
if the local MP is a Conservative.
Ask your Conservative MP:
- To sign EDM 2285 if they have not already done so
- To write to Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson, asking them to commit to including a Bill to reform the
1983 Mental Health Act in their first Queen’s Speech, if elected as Conservative Leader and
therefore, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
- To show Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt a copy of the Child Mental Health Charter and to ask them if
they will guarantee, that any new Mental Health legislation will prioritise the needs of children
- To tell Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt that children, their parents and carers and all who work
professionally with them, would welcome a statement from them during the leadership campaign, making
those guarantees a solemn pledge
- To ask if the MP will agree to have a photograph taken with the Registrant for publicity purposes,
stating that they support the aims of the Charter and will campaign for a new Mental Health Act that
is fit for 21st century children.
Remember – we want to know how you get on!
Contact Monika, Jeff and the team with your feedback and any requests for help that you may have.
Helen had an excellent meeting with Barry Sheerman MP at Westminster. Barry’s wealth of experience and
breadth of knowledge on matters of child health and wellbeing are highly valued across the political divide
in public life; especially through his distinguished Chairing for many years of the Education Select
Committee and lately, the Westminster Commission on Autism ( responsible for the definitive report ‘A
Spectrum of Obstacles’). 24th, June
Barry congratulated the CMHC campaign on its notable contribution to the fact that:
- Child mental health has now climbed to the top of the national policy agenda
- The outgoing Prime Minister and Government have stated that they will legislate to improve the 1983
Mental Health Act in the interests of children’s mental health services
- All candidates in the current Conservative leadership campaign have faced tough policy questions in
their televised debates on child mental health.
We thank Barry very much indeed for his interest and commitment, and are delighted that he hopes to attend
our Jubilee Room Reception on 29th October 2019, encourage other colleagues to sign the EDM and also support
the efforts of Steve McCabe MP to obtain a Westminster Hall Debate
We also welcome his advice that:
- Registrants continue and step up their excellent efforts to date in engaging the interests of their MPs
in the CMHC campaign nationally and locally and urge them to sign the EDM
- The campaign maintains its inclusive ‘all party’ focus
- We should aim to convince ALL political parties to put a commitment to legislate to improve child mental
health in their General Election Manifestos
- Early intervention approaches must be enshrined in any new Mental Health legislation – to include
- A National Register of Therapists that we propose in the Principles is vital in order to weed out poor
practice and dangerous practice and also for safeguarding purposes
- It is essential that training is prioritised for people with responsibility for mental health within
schools; they cannot discharge these duties safely or effectively otherwise and all training MUST be
properly funded and resourced.
- MPs returned after a week’s short Whitsun Recess. However, they were certainly not
inactive as far as our dynamic campaign is concerned! See below for the latest update: 11th - 21st
- Tom Brake MP, following an excellent meeting with Jeff, Monika and Helen, has now written to
Secretary of State for Health, Matt Hancock MP asking that he press for a reform of the 1983 Mental
Health Act (prioritising the needs of children) to be included in the next Queen’s Speech. Matt was a
candidate for the Conservative leadership that will be contested by Boris Johnson MP and Jeremy Hunt MP.
Subsequently, Tom has promised to write to whoever the new Prime Minister is; requesting the inclusion
of the Bill in the next Queens’ Speech. Tom has volunteered to publicise our campaign vis his social
- Andrew Rossindell MP who is supporting Boris Johnson for the Conservative leadership has agreed to a
meeting : on 11th July at Westminster
- Helen will meet Labour MP, Janet Daby on 23rd July at Westminster to ask for her support in the campaign
- Shadow Communities Minister, Julie Cooper has submitted a Question for Oral Answer in the House of
Commons Education Questions Ballot and is tabling some Written Questions for us. Many thanks to Julie
for her invaluable ongoing support
- Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt MP who will contest the Conservative leadership head to head with Boris
Johnson MP became the first candidate to mention his plans to insist on mental health support for all
children to be available in schools. WATCH THIS SPACE!!
- Outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May affirmed that the Government intends to legislate to make good her
commitment to correct the ‘burning injustices’ children are faced with in the mental health services
- The first two Conservative leadership debates (Channel 4 and BBC1) included questions put to all the
candidates about the need to radically improve children’s mental health services
- Minister for Mental Health, Jackie Doyle-Price has promised to fix a meting with us following the
intervention of Sir David Amess MP
- It is now imperative that Registrants ask their local MPs to sign the EDM and to write to both Boris
Johnson MP and Jeremy Hunt MP, asking them to guarantee that they will include a reform of the 1983
Mental Act Health Act in their first Queens; Speech (prioritising the needs of children)
- Helen will meet with Barry Sheerman MP on 24th June at Westminster
congratulations to PTUK Registrant, Paula Brown! Paula contacted her local MP, Kerry McCarthy, hoping to
interest her in our Child Mental Health Charter Campaign. Paula worked wonders, because Kerry responded by
writing in support of the Charter Aims and Objectives to Minister, Jackie Doyle-Price MP. 12th June
Now the Minister has repeated her written pledge to George Howarth MP, stating again that the Government will
introduce new mental health legislation prioritising the needs of children when parliamentary time allows. She
also said that relevant Departmental Officials have agreed to meet with Jeff and Monika very soon to discuss the
Well done once again to Paula! We hope that her tremendous success will inspire you all to approach your local MP
about the campaign. Don’t forget to tell Jeff and Monika how you get on too!
- MPs returned today after a week’s short Whitsun Recess. However, they have certainly not been
inactive as far as our dynamic campaign is concerned! See below for the latest update at the time of
writing: 11th June
- Tom Brake MP, following an excellent meeting with Jeff, Monika and Helen, has now written to
Secretary of State for Health, Matt Hancock MP asking that he press for a reform of the 1983 Mental
Health Act (prioritising the needs of children) to be included in the next Queen’s Speech. Matt is also
a candidate for the Conservative leadership so this is a very key ‘win’ for us and huge thanks to Tom
who has also volunteered to publicise the Charter Campaign via his social media outlets
- Andrew Rossindell MP who is supporting Boris Johnson for the Conservative leadership has agreed to a
meeting (date to be confirmed)
- Helen will meet Labour MP, Janet Daby on 23rd July at Westminster to ask for her support for the
- Shadow Communities Minister, Julie Cooper has submitted a Question for Oral Answer in the House of
Commons Education Questions Ballot and is also preparing to table some Written Questions for us. Many
thanks to Julie for her invaluable ongoing support
- Conservative leadership front-runner, Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt MP has become the very first
candidate to mention his plans to insist on mental health support for all children to be available in
schools. Thank you to Jeremy and WATCH THIS SPACE!!
- Minister for Mental Health, Jackie Doyle-Price has promised to fix a meeting with us following the
helpful intervention of Sir David Amess MP