Tower Hamlets Labour Group tabled a motion calling on the council to sign up to the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge at a meeting of the Full Council on 16th September. The council passed the motion unanimously.
The motion calls on Tower Hamlets Council to publicly sign the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge and to support the implementation of the Challenge and its commitments through an action plan.
By agreeing the resolution, the council is committing to support councillors and staff to promote positive mental health and support people with mental health problems. As part of this, mental health awareness training will be made available for all elected members and the council will promote the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge guide, to ensure that councillors can support their constituents and know the appropriate referral routes.
The council has also called for training for frontline staff, such as housing and lettings teams, so they can identify, signpost and support people with mental health needs appropriately, including knowing the right referral routes to ensure people get timely help.
Mayor John Biggs commented:
“As Mayor I'm fully committed to promoting mental health in our communities and ensuring people who need support can access it as early as possible. The council can have a huge impact – along with our partners in health, other services and local employers – so I look forward to working together to implement the Mental Health Challenge.”
Cllr Amy Whitelock Gibbs, Cabinet Member for Health & Adult Services, said:
"During the council debate, I was humbled by councillors sharing their personal experiences of mental health and the unanimous support for this council motion. We know this is a huge issue locally, with high levels of mental health problems and many risk factors for poor mental health. At the same time, mental health services across the country are struggling in the face of spending cuts and rising demand.
I'm delighted to have the backing of the Mayor and all parties for the council to sign the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge.”