9 Oct 2018

Sam Royston, Director of Policy and Research at The Children’s Society, said: “It’s really alarming that around 400,000 under 19s are being treated for mental health problems and tens of thousands more in desperate need of help are being turned away.

“But this report shows that the Government is stumbling in the dark and struggling to get a grip on the situation. 

“It still cannot reliably say how many children need mental health treatment, children who do get support still often wait for months for treatment and frontline staffing shortages continue.

“The NHS 10-year plan must address these issues, but if the Government is serious about providing children with the same level of help with their mental health as with their physical health it needs to triple spending in this area and ensure local health commissioners do not spend this cash on other priorities. 

“It must also increase spending on early help in education and social care before deep-seated problems emerge, for instance, by ensuring all secondary school children have access to a counsellor.

“This additional funding must be combined with renewed ambition and urgency if warm words are to be turned into tangible improvements for our children and young people.”

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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.