British Prime Minister Theresa May has put mental health at the heart of her “shared society” agenda. This is not the same as her predecessor’s “big society” and is clearly different from Margaret Thatcher’s “no such thing as society.”
Later today, Mrs May will elaborate on her vision. David Cameron the former prime minister never managed to win over the public on his “big society” vision.
Speaking on mental health issues, she said, “I was talking to somebody earlier today and they were making the point that in the workplace, if you break your arm and you go in with your arm in plaster or in a sling, people will come up and talk to you about it.
“If you have a mental health problem people are more likely to try to avoid you.
“We must get over the stigma, we must ensure that we are providing the services for people with mental health.”
According to the Daily Mail newspaper an extra £1 billion has been put into the mental health budget.
She continued, “It’s not a five-minute job, we can’t deal with these issues just overnight, it’s not about one speech, it is about driving reform forward over a period of time and being honest with the public that this does take time to deal with.
“Money is going into mental health. But it is always wrong for people to assume that the only answer to these issues is about funding. Yes there are some issues there and we have been looking at those and addressing those.
“But actually if you look at the issue of mental health in this country, I think it is more about the stigma that still attaches to mental health, it is about how we recognise one-in-four of us will suffer from some mental health issue through their lives.”
Since the government came to power eight years ago deep divisions have erupted through British society due to pay disparity and cut after cut in budgets.
She will outline her “shared society” vision later today.