Our success stories
Over more than 60 years Mind has worked to improve the lives of all people with experience of mental health problems.
Through public campaigns, government lobbying and the more than 1,000 services our local Mind associations have delivered in communities across England and Wales, we have touched millions of lives.
Here are some recent achievements of which we are proud:
Equality Act: Mind secured our key aim for the Equality Bill when an amendment introducing a ban on the use of pre-employment health questionnaires was passed successfully, after months of campaigning in parliament. Employers are longer be able to ‘weed out’ job applicants by requiring them to disclose their mental health history on an application form or at interview.
General Election: Mind ensured that mental health was high on the election agenda, with many of our manifesto ‘asks’ included in Labour, Liberal Democrat and Conservative party manifestos, and later in the Coalition Document.
We provided supporters with election-specific online campaigning tools, and it worked. Over 100 parliamentary candidates got in touch with Mind to find out more about our work, and we are now in regular contact with those who were elected.
Independent Mental Health Advocacy: For many years, Mind and the Mental Health Alliance have campaigned for greater rights and safeguards for people detained under the Mental Health Act. In April 2009, a new Independent Mental Health Advocacy service was rolled out across England. (And in Wales, in October 2008.) This service will enable people detained under the Mental Health Act to speak out, to express their views and to defend their rights.
Suicide prevention training: As a result of some hard work and intensive negotiations South Wales Police are currently training six Mental Health First Aid Instructors to deliver MHFA (Wales) training to the whole of South Wales Police force. This will mean that every police officer, special constable and community support officer (as well as other key staff) working within South Wales Police will receive the 12-hour, Welsh Assembly Government-approved, MHFA training.
Time to Change: Mind partnered with Rethink to launch the groundbreaking Time to Change campaign to challenge stigma and discrimination. The first stage of the awareness-raising campaign – an England-wide media blitz – was a staggering success. Millions of people in England saw our broadcast, print and tube ads.
Mental Health Media: Mind joined forces with the respected charity Mental Health Media at the start of 2009. When they joined Mind, MHM brought their prestigious Mental Health Media Awards and their new social-networking site Open Up, bringing new audiences to the Mind family.
In the red: Mind's In the Red campaign explored the relation between debt and mental health. Mind called for creditors to ensure a fair and appropriate service for customers with mental health problems. In January 2009 Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) decided to fund a Mind research project to look at how tax issues affect mental health, and how people with mental health problems might be better supported by HMRC if they have tax issues. With projects such as this, Mind is promoting financial inclusion by improving the service that people with mental health problems receive from HMRC, banks and other institutions.
Another assault: Mind's Another assault campaign called for equal access to justice for people with mental health problems. In December 2008, the Crown Prosecution Service announced its intention to publish a policy on prosecuting cases involving victims and witnesses with experience of mental distress. This policy will prevent people with mental health problems being subject to discrimination and stigma when dealing with the Crime Prosecution Service.
Seroxat ban for under-18s: As a result of our campaigning and evidence pulled together with the BBC current affairs programme Panorama, changes were made to prohibit the prescription of this medication to people aged under 18. It was proved there was an increased risk of suicidal thoughts and acts of self-harm in those who took it.
Mental Health Act: The latest amendments to the Mental Health Act were passed, after nearly a decade of lobbying by Mind and the Mental Health Alliance. We successfully fought back Government proposals for more coercive powers. Although the revised Act was not what we wanted, this was a better outcome and it included some hard won improvements to the Government's Bill such as advocacy, protections for children, and tighter criteria for the use of new powers of compulsory treatment in the community.
We need to talk: This campaign was hugely successful in terms of raising the need to invest in psychological therapies in the NHS. As part of a coalition with four other leading mental health charities, Mind argued for a range of psychological therapies to be made available to everyone. In October 2007 the Government announced £170 million of investment in psychological therapies. This will greatly improve access and means that people experiencing distress have greater choice and control over the services they need.
M.A.D art - making a difference: Over 250 artists with experience of mental distress from all over England and Wales contributed their work to this event. The project organised consultations to reach and involve as many different mental health service users as possible. For those artists who took part it was an expression of a personal journey, a footprint of a unique experience or a memory of a time. It also offered members of the public a window into people's experiences of the psychiatric system.
Building solutions: The campaign, which launched in 2004, dealt with how the environments we spend our time in – such as workplaces and mental healthcare environments – impact on our mental health. In one case, following campaigning by service users and psychiatrists with assistance from Mind, one primary care trust reversed their decision to build a 2.5-metre metal security fence around their new mental health building and agreed that planting a dense hedge was a better way to improve patient privacy.
Rocky Bennett inquiry: The Government published its Rocky Bennett inquiry report, which upheld Mind's demands in making strong recommendations around control and restraint issues on mental health wards.
Ward watch: Mind's Ward watch campaign raised issues about hospital inpatient conditions. As a result, Mind influenced positive developments such as improving hospital inspection arrangements, and better training for nurses. Our persistent campaigning on the impact of environment on mental health led the Department of Health to commit £30 million on measures to improve safety on inpatient wards.
Read Mind's official history for the full story.