Kerry McCarthy Labour MP for Bristol East
Yesterday Labour held an Opposition Day Debate to mark Children’s Mental Health Week.
Over the course of the debate, we heard terrible accounts of children in severe mental distress who hadn’t got the support they needed. Mental health appointments being increasingly delayed. Autistic children in sensory overload as they wait for crisis care in A&E. Young people with eating disorders being sent out-of-county for treatment, miles away from their support networks. Sadly, these are symptoms of a larger nationwide problem, which has worsened over the past decade due to Government underfunding of NHS services.
I also took the opportunity to raise the importance of preventing adverse childhood experiences, as many children end up needing mental health support after facing trauma during their formative years.
I hope the Government will consider new approaches – such as those being trialled in Bristol and Oxford that I discuss in this video – to make sure that our most vulnerable young people can access the timely and appropriate support that keeps them safe.