Stigma campaign lacks funds to work

Experts have warned that a government campaign to reduce the stigma of mental health problems is having little impact because it is backed by insufficient resources.

Shift, a five-year initiative to tackle discrimination among employers, public services, young people and the media, was launched last October with £1m funding for the first year.

But Paul Corry, director of campaigns and communications at charity Rethink, said the investment was not enough. He pointed out that it equated to 1.44 pence per head of population, compared with 13p in Scotland for a similar campaign.

A spokesperson for the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health said the campaign would not create the “sea change” in thinking that was needed unless funding was increased.

And Andrew McCulloch, chief executive of the Mental Health Foundation, said: “We need about £50m in order to make an impact. It is just not possible.”

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