22 Nov 2018

Matthew Reed, Chief Executive at The Children’s Society, said: “These alarming figures demonstrate the worrying and increasing challenges our children face when it comes to mental health.

“Children have been let down for too long, unable to get the support they need or when they need it, while the Government has failed to deliver on its promises.

“There are signs it is now beginning to appreciate the scale of the challenge, and the additional £20bn a year for the NHS by 2023 is welcome.

“However, it is vital that NHS managers make children’s mental health a top priority when it comes to spending this money and ensure it reaches the frontline.

"Significant and targeted investment is urgently needed in specialist staff alongside easily accessible and youth-friendly help for children in their community or school, including access to a counsellor for all secondary school children.

“Our well-being research has found that a multitude of factors including poverty, appearance, bullying, gender stereotypes, coming to terms with sexuality and social media could be playing a part in the increasing rates of anxiety and depression.

“This report shows that older young people can be especially vulnerable.  Yet we too often see them being turned away just when they need help the most and we want to see all mental health services support young people through to the age of 25.

“Without urgent investment and meaningful action more vulnerable children and their families won’t get the help they so desperately need.”

You can read the NHS report here.

Media enquiries

For more information, please contact Senior Media Officer Rob Devey on 07814 525918 or rob.devey@childrenssociety.org.uk. For out-of-hours enquiries please call 07810 796 508.