In the red - debt and mental health
Mind has released a new report on debt and mental health, Still in the red, updating the data from our original In the red survey as well as looking at new areas of research. The research was funded by the Royal Bank of Scotland who have also collaborated with Mind to produce new resources to help people experiencing problems with debt and mental health.
Unfortunately, due to reprioritisation of our work, Mind will not be campaigning actively on debt and mental health during 2012. However, we know that this continues to be an important issue for many people and we will consider revisiting it in the future.
Organisations that continue to work hard on these issues include: Citizens Advice, the Royal College of Psychiatrists, the Money Advice Liaison Group, the Money Advice Trust, and Zacchaeus 2000. If you need advice or support, we would recommend contacting a local Mind or Citizens Advice.
We hope that our new report, Still in the red, will help to inform and energise ongoing efforts to reduce the number of people with mental health problems getting into problem debt, and help those in problem debt to avoid developing mental health problems.
What we have been campaigning for:
- a better understanding of mental health problems from creditors, such as banks and credit card companies, so they can improve the service they provide to people
- better regulation of bailiffs, who we know many people with mental health problems have had poor experiences with
- improved advice and support services for people with debt and mental health problems
- health and social care professionals, including GPs and mental health nurses, to provide better support to users of mental health services who are in debt
Successes and resources
- We have helped to raise awareness of the links between debt and mental health among financial organisations, advice services, and health and social care services through our research reports, In the red and Still in the red, and our subsequent work promoting this research and engaging with these stakeholders.
- We have helped to disseminate information and resources to support people experiencing mental health and debt problems through our money and mental health resources and through collaboration with the Royal College of Psychiatrists on their Final Demand booklet for healthcare professionals.
- We have helped to shape regulations and guidance in this area through submissions such as our response to the independent review of the Lending Code, which sets minimum standards for creditor and our response to the Office of Fair Trading consultation on Mental capacity - Draft OFT guidance for creditors.