Wednesday 8 May 2013

"Lights!" Launches (It's Official)

Looking forward to tomorrow when Lights! Camera! ACTION!, our groundbreaking 2013 campaign led by mental health service users and carers in Wales, will be officially launched at the National Assembly in Cardiff by Health Minister Mark Drakeford AM. The event will be attended by service users and carers from across Wales as well as AMs, policy makers and health professionals.

During the day those attending will be able to record their views about the future of mental health services in the Lights! Camera! ACTION! mobile studio which will be on location outside the Pierhead Building along with Hafal's iconic VW microbus.

Our commitment is to give a voice to service users and carers and make sure they are heard by the decision-makers. Film is the perfect vehicle for this. Service users and carers from across Wales will have the opportunity to be both behind and in front of the camera to record their messages and share their experiences of mental health services.

Speaking about the campaign Sue Wigmore, Self Management and Wales Manager at Bipolar UK, tells me: "Following on from the introduction of the Measure and Strategy this is a great opportunity for service users and carers to make sure that the words are put into action and to feed back about the services in their area."

And David Crepaz-Keay, Head of Empowerment and Social Inclusion at the Mental Health Foundation, adds: "People who need or use mental health services really know what works and what doesn't. This is our chance to use our experience of the best and worst of what Wales can offer and share our learning with people who have the power to make a difference."

Lights! Camera! ACTION! is supported by mental health charities Bipolar UK, Hafal and the Mental Health Foundation. During the summer service users and carers across Wales will produce their own film blogs which point local services and national policy makers to good practice in mental health service delivery across Wales - and flag up local deficits in delivery. Service users and carers will talk to camera about what changes we want to see in services as a result of the exciting new law and policy.

Specifically the campaign calls for:

• high quality Care and Treatment Plans for everyone receiving secondary mental health services
• full choice and control for service users on the content of Care and Treatment Plans
• prompt delivery of quality mental health services in response to those Plans and to the needs of people with a serious mental illness using primary care services
• further reform of services which increases service user and carer control over the choice and commissioning of services
• a longer-term move towards full equality in Welsh society for service users and carers including equal access to health and social care, housing, income, education, and employment.

The mobile studio is on location at 22 local county events taking place throughout the summer. The campaign will conclude with a red-carpet event at the Senedd on World Mental Health Day in October.