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Today (Wednesday, October 10) is World Mental Health Day, but there is still a stigma associated with mental health conditions according to the Peterborough Labour Party (PLP).
Mental health conditions have resulted in 17.6 million sick days in the past year.
Better mental health support in the workplace can save UK business up to £8 billion a year, while early intervention for people can help reduce the cost of treating people with these conditions.
However, according to the PLP a survey carried out by Unison in 2017 stated that 68 per cent of staff who work in mental health services felt they are reaching crisis point due to a lack of beds, staff and investment.
Furthermore, people requiring specialist treatment for conditions like personality disorders can wait up to 12 months or longer, putting that individual’s life on hold.
Labour shadow cabinet member for public health at Peterborough City Council, Cllr Samantha Hemraj, said: “As shadow cabinet member with responsibility for health issues in Peterborough, I believe the first step is to take away the stigma associated with mental illness.
“The Government needs to take this hidden condition far more seriously. It also needs to look at the wider impacts of this issue: it’s not just the individual who suffers, it’s their workplace, their friends and their family.
“The lack of resources to deal with this issue is another example of a false economy brought about austerity.
“I will be urging the council to recognise not just the importance of World Mental Health Day, but also its implications – that in order to have a healthy, productive Peterborough, we need to invest in the wellbeing of our citizens, both at a local and national level.”