UK & World News
Miliband Slates Stars Who Mock Mental Illness
Ed Miliband will criticise celebrities who make light of mental illness, as he unveils plans to tackle "the biggest unaddressed health challenge of our age".
The Labour leader says Jeremy Clarkson and Janet Street-Porter wrote articles which belittled people with mental illness and added to a national taboo on the issue.
Many people in Britain could get treatment but are "intimidated" from seeking help by the fear of being mocked and subjected to "lazy caricatures", he will say.
Failure to tackle the taboos and address mental health issues is blighting the lives of millions of people, Mr Miliband will warn.
He will say the failure adds £10bn to annual NHS spending and is costing business £26bn a year in reduced productivity and sickness absence.
In a high-profile speech in London, Mr Miliband will say: "One in four of us will have a mental illness at some point in our lifetime. It is the biggest unaddressed health challenge of our age.
"There are so many people in Britain today who could be treated but who are intimidated from seeking help. And so many people who need support but who believe that no one will care.
"For far too long our leading politicians have been far too silent about mental health, part of a taboo running across our society which infects both our culture and our politics.
"It is a taboo which not only blights the lives of millions but also puts severe strain on the funding of our NHS and threatens Britain's ability to pay our way in the world.
"It is a taboo which must be broken, if we are to rebuild Britain as one nation.
"There are still people who abuse the privilege of their celebrity to insult, demean and belittle others, such as when Janet Street-Porter says that depression is 'the latest must-have accessory' promoted by the 'misery movement'.
"Jeremy Clarkson at least acknowledges the tragedy of people who end their own life but then goes on to dismiss them as 'Johnny Suicides' whose bodies should be left on train tracks rather than delay journeys.
"Just as we joined the fight against racism, against sexism and against homophobia, so we should join the fight against this form of intolerance.
"It is not acceptable, it costs Britain dear and it has to change."
Mr Miliband will announce the creation of a taskforce headed by the chair of Barts NHS Trust, Stephen O'Brien, to draw up a strategic plan for mental health in society.
He will also promise to rewrite the NHS constitution to give patients the same legal right to mental health therapies as they have for physical illness.
Labour would ensure training for all professional staff covers mental health and would integrate physical and mental healthcare more effectively, he will say.
In his first major speech since he claimed the One Nation mantle of Benjamin Disraeli for Labour, Mr Miliband will argue that Britain cannot be one nation if it writes off people with mental illness.
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what do you think?
Let's hope he means it
Brave words Ed.people will take more notice if you give us a few hints as to how you would make it work.
Don't be daft - the man is completely vacuous
the bloke is a grade 1 buffoon, i wouldn't believe him if an asteroid was on collision course with the planet and he was making a public announcement about it. jumped up glory boy, look at me bruv i am doing better than you. working class my a**e.
Who thinks clackson should replace milaband?
Windows Live User
I think Clackson as you call him should be replaced or has been with some weird life form that wasnt exactly completed correctly
David, I think we have enough puppets in parliament lol. One person that would've made a good PM. Would've been Joanna Lumley. That's my opinion though :)
That's rich coming from him. David and team have short comings, chief whip had a problem, so instead of giving a helping hand he calls them names and says they should be thrown out. the clown that goes round now comes round
Mental health problems can affect ANYONE at ANYTIME. . . People deserve sympathy, not derision
Windows Live User
Dont I know it. Some of these clowns who utter such callous remarks to earn their salaries should hope it never their turn to suffer. uncompassionate b..*tds
Ed, well said for once. Mental health is a very serious subject and people who suffer from it should not be made to look small. These people should be very ashamed of themselves. They are in a great position to help, educate and highlight the problems.
Milibend has no sense of humour so he won't be affected
How low will this idiot go to win the popular vote. He hasn't a policy in his head and has to resort to cheap headline making - pathetic
I didn't know Clarkson was a star? He's an overgrown schoolboy that still plays with his toys! Prat!
its called humour - or is it that people look at your past 2 leaders and draw the same likeness.
i had a mate who suffered from depression . he was put in a home when he was a kid . i think he was sexually .abused . 10 years ago my dad found him in the woods he had hanged him self
Very sad X
I had a friend at school called Victor who was quiet sort of lad but always seemed sad. Lost touch with him when I joined RAF. Came home on leave and my mother told me that he had killed himself on railway. I didnt find it at all funny Mr Clarkson
Stephen I would think only those who have actually been there know the depths to which those with depression can sink
Just wondering, someone with depression, how do they pass one of these work assessment interviews? It seems that people being treated for cancer and who have just come out if a coma are fit to work apparently.
All aboard the bandwagon!
Whilst I am of the opinion that Clarkson and Street-Porter are insensitive clowns there is no reason to curb their freedom of speech. This country is stifling individual opinion. Instead of getting down to serious politics Labour tend to stand on the side lines heckling like fools at a football match who know nothing about football.
GS. To some extent yes but it still dosen't give anyone the right to mock or belittle others whatever their perceived shortcomings
I used to like clarkson but im fast becoming off him by his stupid remarks. Lets just hope. he doesnt have someone with metal health issues in his own family.time will tell jeremy.
No wonder people are cracking up, with fools like Miliband in the Government. Like someone said earlier "lets all jump on the band waggon". What else will he want to ban when motorway mouth Clarkson says something stupid? The only way to resolve issues like this are to ignore people like Clarkson who appears to have several cogs missing from his own gearbox of a brain.
Miliband is off again generating a stupid gagging order just because some disturbed fools crack sick jokes. Remember, it takes "one to know one". In my mind Clarkson is a bully who needs some form of counselling followed by therapy. Perhaps he would be more suited to politics?