Date Published: 13 February 2019
Rutland County Councillors have put forward recommendations to help boost mental health support for people living locally.
A detailed report looking at ways to aid mental health in Rutland was approved by the council’s Adults and Health Scrutiny Panel at a meeting on Thursday 7 February.
A special mental health working group was created by the scrutiny panel in February 2018 and has spent a year reviewing how local mental health support is provided.
With the review now complete, the group has reported back to Scrutiny and made recommendations to support improved mental health in Rutland – particularly among children and young people.
“At least one in four of us will experience difficulties with mental health at some point in our lives. One in six adults has a mental health problem and half of all people with lifelong mental health problems have developed them by age 14. Mental health is just as important as physical health. Good mental health is essential and can have a significant impact on things like education and employment, not to mention our relationships with those closest to us. We’ve spent the past year working to understand where we can make improvements to local services that provide mental health support. We’ve learned a lot through this work and made some important recommendations, as a result.”
Gary Conde, Chairman of the Mental Health Joint Task and Finish Group
The mental health working group spent 12 months speaking to primary and secondary schools, local police, members of the Armed Forces, Citizen’s Advice and public health officers.
Members of the group also looked closely at the level of demand for mental health services, availability of information and accessibility before making a number of recommendations, including:
- Make information about mental health services clearer and easier to find for both adults and children
- Work more closely with partners like the NHS to help raise awareness of mental health services and reduce the stigma around mental health
- Continue to support suicide awareness and prevention
- Provide mental health training for all Council staff – not just those who provide mental health support
- Encourage all schools in Rutland to have a trained Mental Health First Aider
“I’d like to thank everyone who has helped with this review. Mental health is gradually getting the recognition it needs. As part of this increased awareness, it’s important that we do away with the stigma around mental health. We all need support and shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help. In turn, the council is committed to making sure the right services are in place and able to help when needed.”
Councillor Gary Conde
After being endorsed by Scrutiny, the report on Mental Health from the Joint Task and Finish Group will be presented at the Council’s next Cabinet meeting, for approval. If approved, work will then begin to put the recommendations into practice.
The report will also be discussed at Rutland’s Health and Wellbeing Board, which will focus on mental health at its next meeting in March.
The full report, including all recommendations, can be read on our Meetings page.