Campaigns round up : great start to 2017
As MPs set off for their summer break following the General Election, Chris from our campaigns team reflects on a busy six months and how, together with our supporters, we are helping shape mental health policy and ensuring that people with mental illness have a voice.
Highlighting the barriers people with mental illness face from employers
Although the Government has committed to reducing the number of people with mental illness who are unemployed, our survey of 500 employers shows that people with severe mental illness would still face barriers even when they are well enough to work. 74% of employers said they would worry that someone with severe mental illness would need lots of time off. However, the majority of employers (56%) said they would be more likely to employ someone if they felt better equipped to support them.
Campaigning for a Mental Health Act that is fit for tomorrow
Last summer, many of you responded to a survey that we carried out on behalf of the Mental Health Alliance about the Mental Health Act. The results are now in! You can read the findings in a new report: A Mental Health Act fit for tomorrow. Over 8,000 people responded to the survey, which revealed deep concerns that people’s dignity and human rights are overlooked under the Act. In June, Government announced that they will review the Mental Health Act, so we will be campaigning to ensure that the voices of everyone affected by the Act are heard.
Gaining support from MPs
Because of your efforts, we reached over 400 parliamentary candidates during the General Election, asking them to ‘speak up for mental illness’. This means that Rethink Mental Illness will be working closely with elected MPs, and others, to ensure that issues important to people with mental health problems are fully represented in Parliament.
Marching at Pride
Rethink Mental Illness had a fantastic presence at the London Pride parade last month. Our campaigners and staff marched in the parade to show support for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community (LGBTQ+), whom we know have a high rate of mental illness. More than one million people took part in this year’s Pride - we’re excited to build on our presence in 2018 and beyond!
Thanks to our campaigners, the start of 2017 has been a tremendous! We are now planning our autumn / winter campaigns...watch this space for our Rethink Schizophrenia campaign in September
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