Alliance welcomes creation of scrutiny committee for next draft Mental Health Bill

14 July 2004

The Mental Health Alliance today welcomed the publication of an order to create a Committee of MPs and peers to scrutinise the forthcoming second draft Mental Health Bill.

The Alliance of over 60 service user groups, charities and professional organisations heralded the creation of the committee as an important opportunity for Parliament to examine the Government’s plans for mental health legislation.

Paul Farmer, chair of the Alliance, said today:

"The Government’s first draft Mental Health Bill was universally condemned for excessive focus on public safety and its extension of compulsory treatment. We strongly hope that the next draft Bill, when it is published, will be significantly improved and a real advance on the current Mental Health Act.

Pre-legislative scrutiny should allow mental health service users, carers, workers and voluntary organisations to have a real say in the creation of a new Mental Health Act. All of our members look forward to working with the committee to put forward recommendations for a Bill fit for the 21st century."

-ends-

Note to editors