its "ignorance and prejudice" over mentally ill
by staff reporter
Metropolitan police has admitted its own "ignorance and prejudice"
in "perpetuating a myth" that the mentally ill are especially
prone to violence
Metropolitan Police Authority report has recommended officers be
given a "awareness programme" on mental health issues.
report also recommends ending the "inappropriate" use
of police cells to detain people going through a mental health crisis.
follows an announcement last month that the government is to give
mental health trusts £130m for them to build appropriate "places
of safety" for sectioned people brought in by police. Currently
many people picked up by police under sectioning powers are taken
to police stations as the place of safety for further assessment.
Met's report is based on recommendations from a joint review by
police and NHS chiefs in London. The report makes, in total, 33
recommendations relating to the criminal justice system, police
skills and training, information sharing between the NHS, police
and the media, and the management of violence.
Sumray, co-chair of the joint review, said: "Mental health
problems are all too often made worse by ignorance and prejudice,
which can harm those with mental health care needs, their relatives
and those who provide public services."
Metropolitan Police Authority: Joint review -
policing and mental health (pdf)
24: Trusts get 'places of safety' cash - new funds heralded
as the beginning of the end of using police stations for people
in acute distress
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