Publish date: 8 October 2021

The theme for this year’s World Mental Health Day (10 October) is ‘mental health in an unequal world’. The Trust is committed to ensuring mental health services are accessible to everyone regardless of ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or wealth.

Significant inequalities in mental health care exist for people from racial/ethnic minorities, with evidence suggesting this has been heightened further by the pandemic

At the Trust, our BAME transitional leads are working hard to address some of these issues. A concerted effort to bridge this gap has been made with our Mental Health Integrated Network Teams (MINT), Ethnicity and Mental Health Improvement Project (EMHIP) and the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) teams.

We’re also working to establish closer links with the voluntary sector as well as faith and community networks to create a partnership with the common goal of targeting inequality in mental healthcare. These partnerships have allowed us to connect with the local community and helped Trust representatives discuss mental health, NHS services available and how they’re best accessed. Translators are provided by the Trust to help ethnic minorities who may not speak English as a first language have a better understanding of mental health and dispel the stigma associated with mental illness.

BAME transitional lead for local services, Anthony Gabriel said:

“We‘re working hard to strengthen the collaboration among our local authorities, faith groups and voluntary sector partners to address inequalities and prevent mental health deterioration in our vulnerable communities.  We’re building links to these groups for two way communications to better understand each other, what we can do for them, but also learn about cultural differences to be able to adjust our practices to meet those needs”.

On the work that is being done in our forensic services, Faith Ogbebor (BAME transitional lead for Forensic Services) said:

“The BAME carers’ peer support group was initiated earlier this year to help reduce inequalities in response to concerns that there was a lack of involvement in the service from BAME carers. The aim of this group is to improve representation of BAME carers who will help reduce inequality within our services.”

On work that is already in progress, Karl Collins, BAME transitional lead for high secure services, said:

“We’ve been examining restrictive practices in forensic services and Broadmoor hospital to determine whether restricted intervention varies by ethnic grouping. More specifically, we have looked at patient seclusion hours, enforced treatment, depot medication and also the trends that have led to seclusion to see if there are any disparities between ethnic groups.

More information can be found here:

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