Care Not Custody
In June 2008, the WI passed a resolution calling for an end to the inappropriate detention of people with mental health problems.
More than two-thirds of all prison inmates have two or more mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. Many have a history of attempted suicide and self-harm, while significant numbers have severe and ongoing problems such as schizophrenia or personality disorders.
Too many people are getting inadequate mental healthcare in prisons when they could have been diverted to hospitals or community based alternatives. The NFWI is calling for people with mental health problems to get the right care for their condition via more diversion schemes and better community mental health services offering safe alternatives to imprisonment.
In March 2011, at a reception hosted by the NFWI and PRT, the Secretaries of State for Health and Justice jointly announced their commitment to developing liaison and diversion services in police custody suites and criminal courts across England by 2014, and the investment of £50 million to support this initiative.
In January 2014 a further £25 million was committed to the ongoing development of liaison and diversion services and ten trial sites were announced. These sites will trial and further develop a robust model for liaison and diversion, and data will be collected and evaluated. National coverage for liaison and diversion services is set to increase year on year, with full rollout now scheduled for 2017.
For previous news updates on this campaign, check out the Care not Custody news and events page.
By raising awareness of this complex subject WI members have been able to help highlight what for too long has been a hidden issue, despite the tremendous impact it has on those affected, and the pressure on relatives and family breakdown that can result. Click here to find out what action WI members have taken, and to download the action pack.
Contact the NFWI
- Phone: 020 7371 9300
- Open hours: 9am–5pm Mon–Fri
- Address: 104 New Kings Road, London SW6 4LY
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