This week we tried something a little different and invited our listeners to ‘ask us anything’. Absolutely anything at all. The topics ranged from our usual territory of mental health and the NHS through to the psychological impact of Santa and the, slightly sinister sounding, ‘Elf on the Shelf’.
Theresa May’s speech to the 2017 Conservative Party Conference may be long remembered, though perhaps not for the reasons she might wish. It was thus easy to overlook some of the substance of what she said. While the PM may have been handed a P45, she is still the holder of the top job in the UK Government and it’s of more than passing interest to us that she announced the formation of an independent enquiry to review the current Mental Health Act (MHA). The review will be chaired by Professor Sir Simon Wessely and will focus on increasing rates of detention under the Act. It will also look at the disproportionate numbers of people from black and minority ethnicities (BME groups) who are detained using these powers. Ahead of the review group’s first meeting (in November 2017) we asked several of our contributors and staff what they think of the announcement and where they hope it may lead. We’re very pleased to welcome back the legal expertise brought by @THEAGENTAPSLEY and to debut our very own Maria Griffiths. So, without further ado, let’s roundtable!
In this show we look at how professionals working in mental health relate to their own experiences of distress. Can a worker’s own history of difficulties enrich their practice? Or are other factors more important? Should a worker’s own experiences be taboo when talking to service users, or It is helpful for a professional to be open about things that have happened to them?
In this edition our panel offer some thoughts on the 2017 General Election: called by the Prime Minister in the hope of winning a large majority, but offering a far less clear result. To help us along we have an interview with our colleague Dr Mark Bennister, Reader in Politics and a specialist in political leadership. Mark talks us through the campaign, analyses the leaders’ performances and assesses the current situation with a hung Parliament. We talk about how psychological theories may shed some light on how people voted. We also discuss populism, rationality, the strong feelings raised on all sides and whether any politician can get elected if they tell us we’ll lose out.
In this edition we discuss the compulsory powers available in the mental health system in the UK These include the Mental Capacity Act and the Mental Health Act (MHA). The regular panel is joined by Emma Rye, a Clinical Psychologist working in in the field of learning disabilities. Emma is currently in training to take up the role of a ‘Responsible Clinician’ under the MHA. We also have interviews with Dr Matthew Debenham, an NHS psychiatrist, and with service users Rai Waddingham and Raza Griffiths, both of whom discuss how compulsory powers were used in their own treatment.