HC Deb 26 April 1999 vol 330 c26W
Mr. Pike

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the provision of mental health treatment for members of the(a) black and (b) ethnic minority communities; and if he will make a statement. [81409]

Mr. Hutton

Our assessment is that, in common with other client groups suffering from mental health problems, the concerns and needs of people from black and ethnic minority communities have not been met under the system of care we inherited. That is why we have taken a fresh look at the provision of mental health services and produced a new strategy document entitledModernising Mental Health Services: safe, sound and supportive, which was distributed to every Health Authority in December 1998, and backed it up with an additional investment of £700 million over three years for better treatment and care. This new strategy makes clear the Government's commitment to ensuring that everyone with mental health problems is treated fairly, on the basis of need, in a manner which preserves their autonomy, and which promotes opportunity for choice, and this includes people from black and ethnic minority communities.