Local community asked to help stop stigma in 2010


‘Help us stop stigma in 2010’ says the South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. The Trust is launching a New Year poster campaign for 2010, renewing its commitment to fight the stigma that so often surrounds people with mental health problems and learning disabilities.

The Trust is distributing a series of posters around its own NHS and social care premises, GP surgeries, health centres and A&E departments across Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield. The Trust has also sent posters to local libraries, leisure centres and voluntary services in the Halifax, Huddersfield, Dewsbury, Wakefield and Pontefract areas.

The designs were produced entirely in-house by the Trust (at no additional cost) over the last few years. Designs range from a scrabble board showing words like ‘bonkers’, ‘loony’ ‘schizo’ ‘nutter’ and ‘psycho’ to a poster that lists famous names who have been affected by mental health issues and still achieved success. There is also a poster design which compares mental health to physical health and one that shows how people with learning disabilities can be discriminated against.

South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust provides specialist mental health and learning disability services across Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield and has always been committed to fighting the stigma that surrounds mental ill health and learning disability.

Chief Executive, Steven Michael, explained, "Stigma can be extremely damaging, making it harder for people with mental health problems and/or learning disabilities to get the help they need, to recover and to live fulfilling lives. In fact, many people say that stigma is harder to deal with than the ill health itself. We hope that by displaying these posters in our local communities it will encourage people to think differently.

"1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem and so lots of us, our friends, colleagues and families may need to use mental health services in our lifetimes. Added to this there are around a million people in the UK who have a learning disability. It’s therefore very important that we challenge attitudes which make people feel like they have no value in our society".

Local communities are encouraged to display posters in shops, places of worship, community settings or anywhere else they feel is appropriate. Posters can be obtained, free of charge, by calling 01924 327567 or emailing comms@swyt.nhs.uk

Local people can also find out more about the Trust and joining as a member by visiting www.southwestyorkshire.nhs.uk or keep up to date with the latest news at www.twitter.com/allofusinmind

Local community asked to help stop stigma in 2010

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