mental health

72 petitions

Update posted 22 hours ago

Petition to , Sheryll Murray

Suicide prevention barriers to be installed on the Tamar Bridge

There have been many suicide attempts from the Tamar Bridge which appear recently to be increasing in frequency. Not only is this a tragic loss of life which could be prevented but local residents and emergency services are left severely traumatised by what they have witnessed.  Although the Tamar Bridge and Torpoint Joint Committee have been contacted on numerous occasions previously following a suicide they have failed to take and necessary action needed to prevent these deaths. Suicide prevention advocates believe that suicide by bridge is more likely to be impulsive than other means, and that barriers can have a significant effect on reducing the incidence of suicides by bridge.[3] One study showed that installing barriers on the Duke Ellington Bridge in Washington, D.C.—which has a high incidence of suicide[4]—did not cause an increase of suicides at the nearby Taft Bridge.[5] A similar result was seen when barriers were erected on the popular suicide bridge: the Clifton Suspension Bridge, in the United Kingdom.[6] Bridges provide obvious jumping sites, and the construction of safety barriers has been shown successfully to reduce suicides on particular bridges (see Beautrais 2001, Reisch and Michel 2005, Skegg and Herbison 2009). It appears that these averted suicides are not simply displaced to other, unsecured jumping sites, but whether suicide occurs by another method is difficult to analyse.The Clifton Bridge in Bristol is one such suicide ‘hot spot’. Following the installation of a safety barrier in 1998 the number of suicides reduced from an average of 8.2 per annum in the five years before the barrier, to 4 per annum in the five years after it was installed.

Helen Harrington
2,262 supporters
Update posted 2 days ago

Petition to UK Parliament

Increase funding for NHS Mental Health Services

To the Parliament of the United Kingdom, On Thursday 3rd of August 2017, Judge Sir James Munby, head of high court's family division publicly announced how ashamed and embarrassed he was that no NHS hospital bed could be found for a 17 year old who showed an acute risk of taking her own life. She was due to be released from a youth detention centre eleven days from the published report, and after weeks of doctors saying she needed to be placed in further care for her own protection the release was set to take place.  If it was not for Munby's judicial intervention, and a warning that the nation will have 'blood on it hands' if an NHS hospital bed could not be found for her care, there would not have been arranged provisions for the young girl. As he summarises, it demonstrates the 'disgraceful and utterly shaming lack of proper provision in this country of the clinical, residential and other support services'. What is truly sad is that there are so many more people like this poor 17 year old girl, that without a judicial intervention for each, proper care is impossible.  This boils down to one thing. The lack of funding, resources and number of staff able and trained to deal with a rise in youth mental health crises. I can speak from personal experience. NHS doctor waiting times are increasing, which means that those that need a referral from a GP to a local NHS mental health team have to wait whilst things get worse. Not only this, but the waiting list for psychiatric assessment and general counselling/CBT/psychotherapy services are huge. I am still on a waiting list, and I last saw my GP in June. That's two months.  The GP saw this, and explained this to me himself. He referred me to online services such as iTalk and the Samaritans, but these provisions are not the correct help for people such as the 17 year old in question. Proper help, counselling and therapy is needed which over the phone or internet services simply cannot provide. I have seen my friends and family denied similar help until drastic measures are taken. Seeing your friends and family have to get worse before they can get better is truly damning and heartbreaking to see.  So I plead for the parliament of the United Kingdom to discuss, during a parliamentary meeting, to increase funding for the NHS mental services. I urge this and echo Sir James Munby's words; otherwise this nation will have more blood on its hands.  Sincerely,  Ben Hammond. 

Ben Hammond
10,295 supporters
Update posted 1 week ago

Petition to Bupa, Financial Services Authority, Jeremy Hunt

Stop travel insurance companies discriminating against mental health conditions

This summer I planned to go to Spain for a week and wanted travel insurance. After being physically unwell for the last few months, I’ve learnt the importance of making sure I’m covered correctly. I called Bupa, went through my physical medical conditions and medications. All was fine and I would be covered so I paid £21 and received the certificate of insurance. I realised I hadn't mentioned my Bipolar so I asked if this would be something I would need to declare (this hadn't crossed my mind). For those of you that don't know - Bipolar disorder, formerly known as manic depression, is a condition that affects your moods, which can swing from one extreme to another. After declaring my bipolar, I was told I would no longer be covered - even if I paid a higher premium. That’s why I’m calling on Bupa, the Financial Service Authorities and others to stop discriminating in this way and to offer those with mental health conditions travel insurance at a reasonable price. Angry and upset, I made a complaint which they logged. Still to this day (nearly a month later) I’ve heard nothing back. I also took to social media to try and get my voice heard - but the only reply was "we will be in touch." 1 in 3 of us will suffer from some kind of mental health condition at one or more parts in our lives, sometimes our whole life. Since that day, I have done some filming with the BBC about this issue, and have also spoken to Mark Rowland from the Mental Health Foundation about how I can help to make a change. Only a handful of companies provide cover in the UK but the premiums people have to pay are sometimes up to 2000% more than someone without the condition. Please help me to make a difference by signing and sharing ! If enough people get behind this campaign the right provision could be put in place for anyone with a mental health condition planning to take a well deserved holiday.

Elizabeth Watson
57,659 supporters
Update posted 1 week ago

Petition to Jeremy Hunt

Provide Tapering Strips for people who want to withdraw safely from antidepressant 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 dependence 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. Providing a safe method by which people can gradually reduce their psychoactive prescription medications helps patients and helps doctors too. A Dutch research team from the User Research Centre of Maastricht University, 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. Over 2,000 people have already been helped by this solution. More details are available on this website: 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
2,502 supporters