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Reducing severe discrimination in Mental Health services

Black Afro Caribbean Men are up to 6.6 times as likely to be admitted as inpatients or detained under the Mental Health Act as the average population.  It is one of the deepest and most discriminatory social failures of our education, social, health and criminal justice services.

Minority Mental Health 2016 – “Ending Discrimination in Mental Health: Turning the Crisis Tap Off” in London on Thursday 13th October 2016 will address how to change from reactive responses to a proper, planned service.

As a professional manager working in this area we’d like to ask for your input based on experience into this “wisdom of crowds” exercise with pointers to speakers, case studies or solutions based on better collaborative working among agencies.

Penrose and the Social Interest Group have already convened a roundtable of professionals and leaders and are conducting further user group discussions.  Feedback has produced topics around which the programme will be built and to which you can contribute.  We will shortly send out a White Paper from the roundtable.

Look at this tentative list and add to it, if we are missing issues, or suggest who is doing good work in this area, work that shows how to tackle this extraordinary failure in the system.

Identified topics for addressing so far include: 

  • Early Intervention for Prevention – through schools.
  • Ending CRISIS management of BME mental health.
  • Education and awareness of culture and mental health among staff.
  • Education to avoid staff stereotypes and presumptions of what behaviours mean.
  • Prevention and diversion through reskilling the workforce – Attitude Shift.
  • Make this a priority (create an imperative not to ignore and to embrace change).
  • Influencing community, creating a user voice, reducing fear in BME groups of statutory services.
  • Reducing Police involvement in a health issue.
  • Influencing national policy through budget oversight, monitoring and creating an observatory correlating evidence and data.
  • Influencing through first adopter programmes in pilot authority areas.
  • Creating funding incentives and key budget pools in commissioning to cross sectors from public and third sector, and reduce duplication and improve effective use of resources.
  • Creating specialist skills services for high level forensic support.
  • Reducing dependency of “bed” and “pharma” containment.
  • Building transformation capacity and knowledge –  a professional centre –  of what works.
  • Provide evidence of the “social value” return on investment and the impact on cost base for commissioners.
  • Develop personalised services and budget options.

What are the key issues affecting you and your organisation that you would add to this list?

  • What topics do you feel need to be addressed? 
  • Can you suggest a particular speaker that you believe would be both motivating and informative? 
  • Do you have an innovative piece of work to share with this audience?
  • What would make this a must-attend event for you?  
  • What would you hope to come away from the conference having achieved?

Your feedback and contribution to the development of this event would be much appreciated,

Put the date of Thursday 13th October 2016 in London in your diary, (it’s Black History Week in the UK). The expert presentations are being filmed and put into a training and briefing library for professional use around the country.

Please send your ideas to us via

The conference website is at  and there you will find the agenda as it is updated as well as information about the speakers and venue.

Yours sincerely,

Neil Stewart

Editorial Director