Mind responds to announcement of New Back to Work Plan
Vicki Nash, Associate Director for Policy and Campaigns at Mind, said:
“Poverty and mental health problems form a vicious cycle that need to be tackled by every part of government working together. Today’s announcements look like they have come from departments working on different planets. We welcome the UK government making real investment into empowering more people with mental health problems to find work in a way that supports them to get better. And with close to two million people on waiting lists for mental health treatment, investing in talking therapies is the right move.
“The increase in the use of sanctions is deeply worrying though – evidence has repeatedly shown they don’t work and make people’s mental health worse. Changes to sick notes will also make it tougher to be signed off from work and could mean people don’t get the time they need to recover.
“The investment announced shows that the government knows the answer to tackling the number of people struggling with their mental health is to increase, not decrease support. Yet the support being offered doesn’t match the scale of the need and is undermined by a raft of other changes announced. And if expected changes to work capability assessments are confirmed in next week’s Autumn Statement, we will see more people pushed further from work because of their mental health.”