Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour party, pledged to focus on mental health funding and challenge the Conservative party on making parity of esteem a reality, at the party conference in Brighton yesterday.
In his first conference speech after becoming Labour leader, Corbyn emphasised that mental health was one of his top priorities.
This follows the creation of the role shadow minister for mental health to which MP for Liverpool Wavertree, Luciana Berger was appointed.
He said: “We are going to make mental health a real priority. It‘s an issue for all of us. Every one of us can have a mental health problem. So let’s end the stigma. End the discrimination. And with Luciana Berger, our Shadow Minister for Mental Health, I’m going to challenge the Tories to make parity of esteem for mental health a reality not a slogan.”
“With increased funding – especially for services for children and young people. As three quarters of chronic mental health problems start before the age of 18. Yet only a quarter of those young people get the help they need… End the stigma, end the discrimination, treat people with mental health conditions as you would wish to be treated yourself. That’s our pledge.”
He also suggested that the Conservative party want the public to “believe there is no alternative” to job cuts, slashing public services, “vandalising the NHS”, cutting junior doctor’s pay and reducing care for the elderly.
Corbyn continued: “They want the people of Britain to accept all of these things. They expect millions of people to work harder and longer for a lower quality of life on lower wages. Well, they’re not having it. Our Labour Party says no.”