(I’ve received a response on behalf of Ms Sturgeon which my reaction to can be read here https://beccaplenderleith.wordpress.com/2015/06/04/lets-end-mental-ill-health-stigma-by-ignoring-the-mentally-ill/ It was not at all helpful and was just a party line I’ve been fed. I’m very upset by this)
I don’t want this to be an attack on you or your politics. I’m just highly concerned about things you’ve been saying in this general election that aren’t exactly the truth. I don’t agree with your policies on many things but that is not what this is about. You are Scotland’s first minister and I have to respect that and I also respect that there’s a significant chance you’ll still be first minister after Holyrood elections next year.
My problem is now uninformed you seem to be on certain major issues in our country. I was in the audience for Ask Nicola Sturgeon and had my hand up for a good portion of the time and wasn’t called on so I’ll say it now on the off chance that you ever read this. On Monday night at a newsbeat interview you said “I have to convince you that we are doing enough” in terms of our mental health services. Again last night you said that we are putting a lot of funding into child and adolescent mental health services. A referral to CAMHS should take “no longer” than 18 weeks, yet at the end of the quarter ending in December 2014 only 78.9% were seen within 18 weeks and 86% were seen within 26 weeks. That means that 14% of children and adolescents needing mental health services waited more than half a year to be seen. At the end of the day 18 weeks is still far too long for a mental health referral but if that’s the target then it needs to be met.
Primary mental health care workers for children are being appointed when they only have training in one aspect of therapy which does not always work for people and they should at least have a basic knowledge of several even if they’re only highly trained in one element.
Childline in Scotland has noted a 34% increase in calls from children wanting to kill themselves or hurt themselves intentionally in one single year. Over the last 5 years the number of children and adolescents being admitted to hospital because they has self harmed significantly has doubled.
We cannot blame this on a Tory government. All this is happening under an SNP government with control over healthcare.
This is not an attack on the SNP or their policies so anyone reading this please understand that. I have emailed this to Nicola herself but maybe there’s a chance this way to get her to read it on the move by seeing it on twitter or something.