Be part of a new mental health network – take the survey!

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CATALYST 4 CHANGE is a new organisation being developed by a group of community development workers, health professionals and campaigners that have worked at community grass roots level across the UK for many years.

CATALYST will be creating and sustaining a supportive network of mental health and wellbeing initiatives in the African and Caribbean community within the West Midlands. These will include community organisations, social enterprises, faith groups or businesses that have a significant African and Caribbean mental health service user base.

Do you want to be part of a truly supportive network of mental health and wellbeing initiatives in the African/Caribbean community?

Would your group or organisation benefit from tailored support and easy access to professional services? Continue reading

PM to look at ‘institutional racism’ of black people by mental health services

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Young Peoplesource: Care Appointments
published: 1 March 2017

Prime Minister Theresa May said she is “looking at” the treatment of black people by mental health services amid claims of “institutional racism”.

Labour MP Steve Reed said young black men using mental health services were more likely to be subject to detention and “severe” physical restraint, as he called for an inquiry.

The Croydon North MP cited the example of constituent Olaseni Lewis, who died after he was restrained in a south-east London psychiatric hospital in August 2010.

Speaking at Prime Minister’s Questions, Mrs May agreed the issue was a problem. Continue reading

How to decolonise mental health services

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David 'Rocky' Bennett

David ‘Rocky’ Bennett

Before David ‘Rocky’ Bennett’s death in a psychiatric unit 18 years ago, he sent a letter to the nurse director, pointing out there were no black staff members. He wrote:

“There are over half a dozen black boys in this clinic. I don’t know if you have realised that there are no Africans on your staff at the moment”.

Bennett died while being held down by four staff members at a psychiatric unit after a violent altercation with another patient and a nurse. Looking at the circumstances around his untimely death, it’s clear his blackness was threatening to staff members. He had been using the mental health for at least a decade, yet his needs as a black Rastafarian were not being met.

Continue reading