Alliance calls for assurances about future of independent mental health advocacy

25 June 2012

"Independent advocacy is a vital safeguard for people who are detained under the Mental Health Act and it must be a priority for the new health and social care system," Mental Health Alliance chair Alison Cobb said today.

Responding to a report from the University of Central Lancashire on the quality of Independent Mental Health Advocacy, Alison Cobb said: "This report shows that independent advocacy can make a big difference to patients' experience of mental health services. But too many people, especially those from Black and minority ethnic communities, are not getting access to effective advocacy.

"Failing to provide advocacy to everyone who needs it can leave people without vital support at a time they are very vulnerable, it is also a false economy. We call upon all local authorities who are taking responsibility for advocacy to make this new and important duty a priority for their commissioning plans next year."