Rethink Mental Illness responds to 'staggering' number of Black people subject to restrictive interventions

24 November 2022

New annual data from the NHS has revealed a high number of Black people have been subject to restrictive interventions. Restrictive interventions are measures to restrain patients, including physical restraint, tranquilisation and seclusion.

Lucy Schonegevel, Associate Director for Policy and Practice at Rethink Mental Illness, said: 

“We’re appalled to see the staggering number of Black or Black British people subject to restrictive interventions in mental health care. These statistics reinforce the impact of systemic racism that risks the safety of mental health patients, damages their experience of treatment and ultimately hampers their recovery. Now that Seni’s Law has been enacted it must be comprehensively implemented so that there’s a significant reduction in the use of force on mental health wards and these numbers drastically fall. The government must also prioritise reform of the Mental Health Act and provide the investment needed to implement the recommendations outlined in the Independent Review, improve access to culturally appropriate advocacy and ensure that people are treated with compassion, dignity, and respect.”