The first joint report by the Education and Health and Social Care Committees of the House of Commons was published on 9 May 2018, and centred on The Government’s Green Paper on mental health. The report presents the opinions of the Committees on the Green Paper, giving advice and feedback to the Government. The report follows one from 2017 which highlighted the mental health issues faced by young people and the role played by schools and colleges in tackling such challenges.
In this year’s report, the Committees note that they are disappointed their previous recommendations were not fully adopted by Government. Essentially, they point out, the Government’s plans are not ambitious enough. While their ideas are appropriate, the Government will still not reach large proportions of young people needing mental health help. Also apparent in the Committees’ reading of the Green Paper is a lack of speed in the approach, meaning several years may pass before some groups receive assistance.
The Committees highlight a number of areas of concern for mental health in young people, including social media, the current exam system, and the lack of attention to some at risk groups (such as the unemployed).
The Committees’ recommendations are that the Government aims to implement its changes more widely, and includes methods to learn from best practice and improve the offering, ensuring that as many people can benefit to the best possible extent.