Labour aims to bring an end to the neglect of children’s mental health. Half of people with mental health problems as adults present with symptoms by the age of 14. In recent years, referrals to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services have increased by two-thirds, and the number of young people presenting to A&E units with psychiatric conditions has doubled. Suicide is now the most common cause of death for boys aged between five and 19.
Young people feel several pressures: bullying at
school and social media, difficulties at home, relationship problems, concerns
about sexuality and insecurity about body image. Yet, under Tory austerity
measures, local CAMHS is unable to keep up with demand, while mental health
beds for both children and adults have been slashed across Essex. Under the
Conservatives, nearly £400 million has been cut from youth services and over
600 youth centres have closed. Uttlesford has not escaped Tory cuts over the
years as the Tories in Essex have overseen the almost complete decimation of
the Essex Youth Service.
Uttlesford Labour will:
- Invest in early intervention by supporting local youth counselling services and work with local schools and GP surgeries to identify areas of need and the means to effectively deliver services.
- We will seek to revive youth services and support youth clubs and youth centres to provide young people with positive activities, encourage self-confidence and enable vulnerable young people to access services they need.