Author Archives: Howard Sykes

Children Self-harming figures are horrifying on eve of World Mental Health Day

What a week to be marking “World Mental Health Day” (Wednesday 10th October) as children’s mental health is yet again in the national headlines and reaffirming the scandal that it has become. It is shocking as we see ambulance call-outs for children suffering from mental health crises rising at a faster rate than for adults.

We see cases of drug overdoses, self-harming and other psychiatric conditions rising by over a third in the past five years. The number of adult cases has increased by 20%

Moreover, this came on the heels of a recent report that showed that more than a fifth of 14-year-old girls in the UK said they had self-harmed, a report released recently suggests.

A survey of 11,000 children found 22% of the girls and 9% of the boys said they had hurt themselves on purpose in the year prior to the questionnaire. As a parent of three children, two of the girls, I find this horrifying.

Ministers need to address the “crisis in children’s mental health” after a Children’s Society report revealed recently that around one in four 14-year-old girls self-harm.

Posted in News and Op-eds | Tagged | 11 Comments

Social care is in crisis – the Tories must face up to it

In the last six months, more than one hundred home-based and residential care providers have ceased trading, affecting more than 5,300 people, as providers hand back contracts to more than sixty councils, affecting thousands of people. Social care faces a £3.5bn funding gap by 2025. Social care is in crisis and we have a government which is turning a blind eye to it.

Obsessed with Brexit, they have repeatedly ignored the challenge of social care and kicked it into the long grass. A long-delayed green paper on social care that was promised for June has yet again failed to materialise, along …

Posted in Local government and Op-eds | Tagged | 19 Comments
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  • User AvatarRoland 18th Oct - 3:18pm
    @Peter >It’s true that there are several alternative Brexits and each one has its proponents. It seems every Brexit supporting Conservative MP has their own...
  • User AvatarJames Pugh 18th Oct - 3:03pm
    I think Vera's strength as an MP is her ability to identify and champion issues that sound at the surface to be quite niche, but...
  • User AvatarJennie 18th Oct - 2:54pm
    Thanks Caron
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 18th Oct - 1:47pm
    @ Expats, Your the latest one to use the “Having our cake and eating it” argument. I really don't understand that. What's the problem with...
  • User AvatarChris Cory 18th Oct - 1:23pm
    The so called "back stop" is a red herring. The real issue is what happens at the North/south Irish border in the long term. If...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 18th Oct - 1:22pm
    Marvellous to see two articles on this day about areas I care a great deal about. I have and, personally as well as professionally, known...