Funding to help the mentally ill

Paddy Tipping who has been re-elected at the Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner.

Paddy Tipping who has been re-elected at the Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner.

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The county’s health and criminal justice chiefs are bidding for a slice of £15m from the Government to prevent people with mental health problems being held in police cells.

Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Paddy Tipping is backing the bid, which will be spent on creating safe, health-based facilities for vulnerable people who require mental health support if successful.

The Department of Health has announced £15m of funding for 24 priority areas, including Nottinghamshire, for the provision of health and community-based places of safety to protect vulnerable people suffering mental health issues. The aim is to increase capacity in appropriate care-based settings rather than detain people with complex mental health problems in a police cell which puts them at risk.

Commissioner Tipping, who is chairman of Nottinghamshire’s Mental Health Crisis Care Concordat Partnership Board, a body set up following a multi-agency agreement to improve the response to people in the grip of mental health crisis in the county, said he was very hopeful of securing funding to provide a boost to the service improvements the team had already delivered.

“Mental health is a priority for all of us and it’s vital we do what we can to expand our over stretched facilities to ensure fewer people face the indignity of being locked up in a police cell,” he said.

“While there has been a marked change in the way we think about and prioritise mental health issues, largely led by the signing of the Crisis Care Concordat, there is nevertheless a need to deliver practical changes to support this holistic approach.”