Key takeaways from the Mental Health First Aid Race Equity Impact Report
Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England is a social enterprise with the vision of improving the mental health of the nation.
Its recently released Race Equity Impact Report highlighted current issues around the many health inequalities faced by Black people and People Of Colour in the UK. By sharing this detailed report, the MHFA hopes to ‘stimulate ideas, thinking, discussions and action’ to help to bring about change.
We take a look at some of the key takeaway points from the report below and how we can look to change Cloverleaf’s approach, policies and the way that we collect and monitor data to help create a fairer outcome for all.
Racial disparities across mental health services have a devastating effect
A 2018 Independent Review of the Mental Health Act found that Black British people were four times more likely to be sectioned than White people and more likely to be given psychoactive medication than to be offered talking therapy.
Furthermore, a Government Report published in March 2021, showed that:
Black people were most likely to be detained under the Mental Health Act in the year to March 2019, with 321.7 detentions per 100,000 people
the next highest rate of detention was for people in the Mixed ethnic group – 214.0 detentions per 100,000 people
White people had the lowest rate of detention – 73.4 detentions per 100,000 people
Racism has a profound effect on mental health
The clear message arising from this ever-growing body of evidence and research is that People Of Colour and Black people’s experiences of racial inequity impact on every aspect of life. These experiences all manifest themselves into poorer physical and mental health for People Of Colour and Black people.
A 2020 YouGov poll reported in the FT reported that half of Black Britons said they were as likely to experience racism at work as they were in the street. With over a quarter of Black People sharing that their mental health has been negatively impacted by racism experienced at work (City Mental Health Alliance, 2021)
Action is needed to change the biased system
We stand with the MHFA’s call for action. Cloverleaf fundamentally agrees that it is not acceptable to live in a society and to operate in a system where race predetermines people's access to mental health services, the support or treatment that they receive and the outcomes they experience.
Taking onboard the key findings and recommendations from the report, we are currently undertaking our own internal audit of our organisational approach to diversity - including racism - and we will continue to work with our staff, stakeholders, and the people who we help to create an anti-racist environment which aligns with our work in the community.
Download a copy of the MHFA Racial Equity Impact Report here: Race Equity Impact Report 2021 - Spreads.pdf (windows.net)