6 petitions

Update posted 2 months ago

Petition to Jeremy Hunt

Provide Tapering Strips to help users who want to stop taking anxiety & depression drugs

Provide Tapering Strips to help users who want to stop taking anxiety & depression drugs Psychoactive prescription drugs (such as antidepressants, antipsychotics and anti-anxiety medications) are often very difficult to stop taking. Many people experience difficulties stopping or reducing their drugs even with the support of Doctors and Psychiatrists. Because stopping or reducing these drugs is so difficult, many people feel trapped into taking these tablets for many years, giving them side effects and costing the NHS money in providing unnecessary prescriptions. Many of these drugs cause a physical dependance and the best way to avoid any unpleasant symptoms is to reduce the dosage slowly over an extended period. As it is now, many people who want to stop have no option but to reduce to the lowest possible dosage then “jump off” which can be extremely challenging. Some users simply carry on taking a drug beyond the point at which it was effective and useful to avoid the challenge of stopping. A Dutch research team, led by Dr. Peter Groot and working with the not-for-profit Cinderella Therapeutics foundation have created the solution that this petition is calling for, website is in Dutch but an English translation is on the way Listen to my interview with Dr. Groot here: What we want We want the UK medical authorities to trial and implement Tapering Strips which provide the most commonly prescribed medications in decreasing doses over a period of time.  We need Tapering Strips to help the millions of users of psychoactive pharmaceutical drugs because: Many tablets are only available in increments that are so large that they are useless for gradual lowering (tapering) of the dose.  Liquid forms for some medications are available but tend to be hugely expensive and therefore the NHS will not provide them.  Pill cutting is, at best, a hit and miss affair and can lead to withdrawal. Many doctors and psychiatrists confuse the symptoms of withdrawal with a return of the symptoms that the tablet was originally prescribed for. These kits would save a significant amount of time for General Practitioners, Psychiatrists and Community Mental Health teams. These kits would help users of psychiatric medications stop taking them safely and in a controlled fashion, giving them control over their drug intake. This solution exists and has already helped over 2,000 Dutch patients. We should adopt this approach UK wide and learn all we can from the Dutch researchers leading the study. This is vital work, and the solution is elegant and brilliantly simple. For more information visit:

James Moore
2,367 supporters
Started 6 months ago

Petition to Martin Gannon

Gateshead Council should provide free school transport for young people with SEND

We disagree with the method that that Gateshead local authority and council are using to save money. As part of their money saving strategies they have withdrawn funding for home-school taxis for some young people with SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities).  Many young people with SEND attend specialist schools or colleges that are suited to supporting their particular needs. Often these schools are not within their local catchment area and they must travel significant distances each day to access the most suitable educational provision for them.  Historically, young people with SEND have been provided with free home-school transport should they require it. The problem is that Gateshead Council are now asking some families to arrange and pay for their child's transport.  The council choose who must pay by judging who is capable of travelling independently using generalisations about disabilities rather than looking at the specific facts surrounding an individual’s needs.  Although classed as 'ambulant', many young people have hidden disabilities such as Autism, Mental health difficulties such as anxiety or learning difficulties like Dyslexia or processing difficulties. All these conditions can make independent travel a terrifying experience for some of these vulnerable young people.  Independent travel must be introduced at the right time for the individual - not when the council deems it appropriate. Furthermore, if the organisation and payment of transport is placed on the families of these young people, life is made even more difficult for families who already face many day-to-day challenges. For parents who have children at a mainstream and special school it will be problematic to get both children to school on time. This could put a lot of pressure on parents and affect both children’s education. Likewise parents worry about the cost of getting their child or children to school if they have to pay for buses or taxis. In addition we believe it is short-sighted of the council to introduce a policy that could increase traffic and pollution which in turn will increase the need to spend money on road infrastructures and health. Therefore we are urging Gateshead Council to discuss the SEND transport policy again as soon as possible and find a way to support vulnerable young people and their families who already facing great difficulties.

Fair Transport Gateshead
134 supporters
Started 1 year ago

Petition to jeremy hunt mp, Alistair Burt MP, David Cameron MP

Improve mental health care and mental health awareness across the country

For many years now I have been aware of an issue that affects 1 in 4 people per year; this being mental health issues. Yet still in our society and in many cases of medical care it is seen as something that is less important than physical health, when the truth is that it is easily just as life changing and life damaging. Myself and many others who suffer from mental health issues would love to see a change in the quality and availability of mental health care so that no-one has to suffer for many years or feel that they are unable to get help.  Hearing experiences of family and friends around me, I know that the urgency of care surrounding mental health services have been poor in the recent years. They are left with uncertainties and a lack of communication between doctors/services of which causes more stress on their half, this being far from helpful to their health. Alongside this, education and awareness on this issue should be promoted to a more important subject as I know there are many young people around me who refuse to seek help or accept a mental health issue because society sees it as 'abnormal' or that they are 'insane'. This is far from the truth. In fact, its a very common issue that surprisingly is not given enough urgency or focus within healthcare. It upsets me that people often feel so alone with this, so I believe that society should be educated for it to be seen as a normal issue, and better promotion of good mental health care should be placed alongside this. In the area I live suicides are very common on a nearby bridge, currently seeing a jumper there at least weekly now. I can't help but think for both those who jumped and those who were stopped; "Is it because of mental health issues?" Lives should never be took, especially in our modern society, as a result of a preventable issue. Maybe if they felt they could turn to someone, or maybe if long waits didn't occur between being seen to by these services, some of those people may still be with us today and in a better state of mind. You wouldn't leave someone having a heart attack to 'sort it out themselves', so why do the same with such a life threatening issue that isn't always noticable? From my own personal experience battling with generalized and social anxiety, my path to help was a difficult one and often caused more stress than it was worth. When I was assessed by a mental healthcare service ran by the NHS, it took me over a year without any kind of help to finally hear back and to get counselling sessions appointed to me. During that time my mental health declined to a dangerous level of which, if left any longer, could have easily resulted in me not being here today. It affected me to a level of which I could physically no longer do what a typical teenager would. I isolated myself, stopped going to school and became very depressed, not because i chose to; but because i physically and mentally couldn't handle those things any longer. This time gap should never happen as I'm certain that those with a physical issue such as a broken arm would have been seen to immediately. Who is to decide that, just because it isn't physically noticeable, mental health issues are less serious and therefore deserve less urgency and care to be put into their case? It is a fact that suicide rates are increasing in the country and mental health issues are one of the main causes for these, with 18,220 people with known mental health problems committing suicide over the rate of 10 years. This rate is only getting higher and awareness needs to be made for this to drop to 0%. Care-wise, my personal experience was effective alongside the help of medication, however I was switched many times between different counselors after I had become comfortable with them. Although information was claimed to be passed, it rarely was and this resulted in me having to re-explain myself and start from the beginning, in addition with having to get comfortable with yet again a new person. This, alongside the year wait, should never have been the case as for someone who used up her courage to go and talk to someone about it, further stress and anxiety was caused because of uncertainty and lack of communication. I believe that with enough people supporting this cause, we can ensure that mental health services and the knowledge surrounding it is improved to a point of which people suffering can be effectively and urgently helped. By raising awareness of this issue, I know we can make mental health care just as important as physical health care. Thank you.

Megan Wardropper
51 supporters