Jeremy Corbyn’s appointment of a Shadow Minister of Mental Health (Luciana Berger) gives us a timely reminder of how important mental health is, not only on a personal scale, but on a societal and global scale also.
One of the leading mental health issues is anxiety. Almost one person in every five is considered to be suffering from anxiety. Financial issues (including debt) are the leading contributors to the development and persistence of anxiety in day-to-day life.
Depression is also increasing in prevalence. The rate is estimated at about 2.6% of the population.
Almost 10% of the population (9.7%) suffer from both anxiety and depression, creating an even greater need for community organisations, health services, workplaces, and government to work together to best support their greatest resource: the general public.
The new appointment of a Shadow Minister for Mental Health should help along with the important conversations about promoting mental health and wellbeing.
By continuing to have the admittedly tough conversations about mental health, we can send the message that it is okay to seek support and advice, and put pressure on government to mobilise the resources to make that support available.
If you feel like you need to talk to someone, or if you’re worried about someone in your life you call Samaritans (24/7) 08 457 90 90 90, or make an appointment to see your GP.
• Figures from Mental Health Foundation: Living with Anxiety report, 2014.