Nick Clegg has long championed mental health issues and he made sure that an extra £400 million has been put into the most effective talking therapies. That’s already made a difference to over half a million people.
Too often these experiences are swept under the carpet – dealt with behind closed doors. Britain is an open and compassionate nation, but we Brits are a private people too – often preferring to put on a brave face rather than ask for help.
So three cheers to the Sunday Express for tackling Britain’s biggest taboo. Over the coming months the Crusade for Better Mental Health will lift the lid on this hidden suffering.
It’s an important wake up call: Reminding us that improving the nation’s mental health is everyone’s business. And not just because it’s the single biggest cause of disability in the UK. It also costs us over £100billion a year when you add in time off work and the benefits bill. Plus us all when prisoners with untreated conditions go on to reoffend.
Last year I launched the Coalition Government’s mental health strategy with my colleague, Paul Burstow. Our aim is simple but ambitious: For too long mental health has been the poor cousin in the NHS. We want to put it on a par with physical health so everyone gets the support they need.
It is to be hoped that Express newspapers and all tabloids will adopt a more sympathetic attitude to people in the public eye who clearly are suffering from addiction or mental health issues. I won’t be holding my breath.
Let’s just hope that their reporting lives up to Nick’s words. I’m glad to see him writing in tabloids – another example of good work from our press people.
You can read the article in full here.