IWCC - Reject Proposals to Close Our Mental Health Day Centres!

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The Isle of Wight Coucil have proposed closing 3 mental health day centres as part of their budget proposals. This petition asks them to reject this proposal. The Island needs more and better mental health provision, not less.

I am shaking as i type - I dunno if its with sheer rage that yet again the most vulnerable are bearing the brunt of yet more brutal cuts to essential (in this case - life saving) services, or with fear at the prospect of those people being desperate but having no where to turn.

In 2017, there were 6,213 suicides in the UK. This figure does not include the failed attempts from people who (thankfully) survived. It also does not include the many thousands of people suffering with other effects of mental illness (4 million people in the UK use antidepressants long term, for example), and 1 in 4 people in the UK suffers with a mental illness each year. 

There are so many people who need and rely on services provided by the centers the IWCC propose closing. The council are saying that, despite these cuts amounting to more than £140,000, people will not suffer because other services will replace these, like Personal Assistant services, but this is no comfort, even if you believe it to be true (it seems unlikely that the council will fund a PA for the 100's of people that rely on these mental health centres). 

Mental health fluctuates, good periods and bad. These centres offer drop in services - essential to people who may have very chaotic lives, or suffer with anxiety or a myriad of other issues that make the security, immediacy and safety of regular drop-in clinics very helpful. The opportunity for patients to meet other with similar struggles will also be lost.

Mental health provision on the Island is already shockingly, dangerously inadequate. This is another cut that could seriously harm the well-being of vulnerable islanders, and will ultimately be very expensive, because it costs a lot more money to repair a family or a community after a catastrophe, than it does to prevent one. Generations to come will pay for these cuts, if they go ahead.

Please consider signing this petition and sharing it with your friends - chances are some of them know what it's like to need some support because of mental health, maybe you do too. We must make a stand and demonstrate how important this is. When I was in a dark hole and my mental health was very fragile, I would not have been able to fight these cuts, and that's why it's really important that those of us who can, do. I hope you never need these centres, but if you do, there should be services there to help you get better, and then to help you stay better for as long as you need it.

We need to be able to collect in excess of 2500 signatures from IW residents in order to present this petition and all arguments against cutting these services to the IW Council. Please help.

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