Discursive of Tunbridge Wells

Podcast: The politics of mental health


Podcast: The politics of mental health

The panel try to make sense of mental health policy and politics

This week Anne, Rachel and John are joined by two special guests to discuss the politics of mental health. What are the main initiatives in mental health policy? What do the different political parties have to say? Are there even any meaningful differences between them? And does the recent Mental Health Act Review move us forward? To help us think though these questions we had some help from Akiko Hart and Mark Brown, two people far more involved in political conversations than we are. We also have an interview with our colleague, child psychologist Trish Joscelyne, who takes us through the changing landscape of children’s mental health.

Please note this podcast is a Brexit free zone (though Mark and John did briefly lapse.) This episode was recorded at the National Theatre (in the foyer rather than on the stage). That will explain why there is a certain background hum which may, according to your tastes, add either atmosphere or irritation.


The best way follow the podcast is to subscribe to our feed. You can do this by looking up Discussions in Tunbridge Wells in iTunes, SoundCloud or wherever else you get your podcasts from. Or you can paste the following link into your podcatcher of choice http://feeds.soundcloud.com/users/soundcloud:users:56544633/sounds.rss

 Akiko Hart is the UK Chair of ISPS (the international organisation promoting psychological and social approaches to psychosis). She is also a trustee of the Hearing Voices Network and works for Camden MIND. You can follow her on Twitter @AkikoMHart.

Mark Brown (@MarkOneinFour on Twitter) asked to be introduced simply as a writer. Those of you are familiar with his work may consider this underselling himself somewhat.

You can follow us on Twitter and Facebook by searching for @CCCUApppsy. You can follow Anne, Rachel and John on Twitter @AnneCooke14@rterrypsy, and @drjohnmcgowan.


Links to some of the things we talked about.

A recent episode of of the Cambridge University Talking Politics podcast (one of the things that prompted our discussion).

A handy link to the different party manifestos from 2017 provided by the Mental Health Foundation. 

A piece by sociologist and journalist Jennie Bristow on mental health first aid in schools.

The Kindred Minds Manifesto on race and mental health, and a podcast we did with the author Raza Griffiths in 2018.

The report of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on UK poverty.

A recent talk by John on suicide prevention and zero suicide is available here.

And finally some links on the Mental health act Review.

The Review results.

The response of the National User Survivor Network (NSUN).

The Hearing Voices Network Alternative Review.

A Guardian piece about by Mark about the possibilities of The Review.

A “roundtable “piece we did on The MHA Review ahead of publication.


Please note The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the contributors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any of the contributors employing organisations.


Producer: John McGowan

Music: http://www.bensound.com/

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