Mind puts focus on mental healthcare legislation

Mental health charity Mind has launched a PR campaign to persuade the public that mental health legislation should focus on healthcare and not crime prevention.

The move follows controversial plans by the Government to extend powers to detain and treat people under the Mental Health Act and broaden the definition of mental disorder.

The plans, which were laid out in the revised draft Mental Health Bill last month, would allow community care workers to give treatment without consent.

Mind is arguing that this would lead to more people being sectioned. It is targeting the opinion and editorial sections of national newspapers and medical, social care and charity press to influence public opinion while the bill undergoes pre-legislative scrutiny.

The charity is also calling for people with mental health problems to submit evidence to the parliamentary committee and is hoping to achieve tabloid coverage by securing the support of a celebrity with personal experience of mental illness.

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