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Act Now: Lobby your MP to stop racist mental health Bill

6/6/2007

Plans under the 2006 Mental Health Bill are set to wreak destruction within the Black community

The Bill includes provision to:

  • allow anyone to be detained and medicated against their will even if they will not benefit from treatment.
  • allow anyone can be forcibly medicated against their will within their homes.
  • allow practitioners to restrict the lifestyle and behaviour of those anyone who has had contact with the services.
  • Extend doctors powers to detain patients against their will to other professions

Experts are agreed this Bill will exacerbate the racism within mental health services and lead to countless black people becoming prisoners within their own homes.

What you can do

Ask your MP to sign the Early Day Motion No. 1491 proposed by Sarah Teather calling for a stop these proposals that will exacerbate the racism within mental health services.

Email your MP here

Suggested content for message

Please adapt, using your own words.

As I am sure you are aware, the Government has introduced the 2006 Mental Health Bill to update 1983 Mental Health Act.

As your constituent, I am writing to ask you to support and sign the Early Day Motion , which very much reflects my concerns.

I reproduce the text of the Motion below.

That this House recognises the Mental Health Bill 2006 will have a negative impact on African Caribbeans and other ethnic minorities statistically more likely to be diagnosed with a mental health disorder; notes that African Caribbean communities have detention rates 44 per cent. higher than white British people; expresses concern that African Caribbeans are more likely to be placed in seclusion, forcibly restrained, misdiagnosed and over medicated; supports the work of Black Mental Health UK to address social exclusion and stigma associated with mental illness; recognises that this work is supported by more than 30 mental health and Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) organisations including the National BME Mental Health Network; believes in the fundamental importance of combating discriminatory practices; acknowledges the concerns of many of those working in mental health services that the Mental Health Bill 2006 could exacerbate unequal treatment; and calls on the Government to take steps to ensure this legislation will reduce and not perpetuate discrimination against African Caribbeans.

Your Sincerely

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Resources:

pdf The recruitment and retention of BME staff in the NHS

pdf Race Equality Foundation briefing: The impact of racism on health inequalities

pdf Race Equality Foundation briefing: Effective communication with service users

pdf Race Equality Foundation briefing: Improving the quality of palliative care

MIND: Rights Guides

pdf BME Needs Assessment: Diabetes and Hypertension

pdf Independent Inquiry into the death of David Bennett

pdf Draft Mental Health Bill

Links:

Nightingale Declaration

hyper GUIDE to the Mental Health Act.

MyHealthnet

Black People's Mental Health Association

Cancer Black Care

Black and Asian Therapists Online

African HIV Policy Network

National BME Mental health Network

The Afiya Trust

BMESpark

Fanon Care

The Federation

UNITE TO PROTECT OUR RIGHTS: sign the statement against the erosion of civil liberties and human rights by new anti-terrorism proposals A Black Manifesto No 2 ID FREE FAROUQ PDP ASSOCIATES Power to the People

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