Wednesday 13 June 2012

Formidable Line-Up

The Movin' On Up partners - Hafal, Bipolar UK and the Mental Health Foundation - have supported a Panel of service users and carers to produce a briefing ahead of yesterday's debate in the Senedd on the Welsh Government’s draft Mental Health Strategy, "Together for Mental Health", which is currently out for public consultation.

It was good to see the Panel's views extensively referenced by Assembly Members in the debate and we must now work hard to get their views incorporated in the final version of the Strategy and, crucially, in the "Delivery Plan" which will follow it.

The Panel includes...

• Nigel Griffiths, service user and Chair of the Wales Advisory Panel for Bipolar UK which supports over 1100 service users in Wales.

• Lee McCabe, a Recovery Practitioner with experience of mental illness working for Hafal which supports over 1250 Members and many more users and carers attending Hafal services.

• Jackie James, carer and Coordinator of the All Wales Mental Health Carers Forum supporting 35 carers’ services and many individual carers across Wales.

• David Crepaz-Keay, service user and Head of Empowerment and Social Inclusion at the Mental Health Foundation.

So you can see that this formidable line-up represents and has regular contact with large numbers of service users and carers across Wales.

Their briefing states that while service users and carers in Wales welcome the new draft Strategy they believe there are four areas of the Strategy that should be strengthened:

1. The Strategy needs to make clear that secondary mental health services will be reformed, that resources for secondary mental health services will be protected, and that there will be greater transparency on ring-fencing.

2. We need to broaden the engagement of service users and carers – both in the delivery of their own Care and Treatment Plans and in the wider planning and delivery of services.

3. The Strategy needs to have greater emphasis on the needs of carers and the vital role they play.

4. The Strategy should include a series of clear, meaningful and measurable outcomes for people using secondary mental health services.

See the Panel's full briefing here and see how you can support their campaign here.