Stigma and discrimination faced by people living with complex mental health issues can affect many areas of life, leading to disruption in education and employment, relationship breakdown and loss of life satisfaction and opportunities.
This is why one of our priority recommendations for action, based on what people with lived experience shared through the National Stigma Report Card project, is to: “Develop and resource a comprehensive 10-year national program of work to reduce stigma and discrimination associated with complex mental health issues.”
We are therefore heartened to see tangible and immediate action being taken to address the impact of stigma and discrimination, in alignment with our research and advocacy work.
However, SANE will continue to advocate for the prioritisation of the needs of people affected by lower prevalence and less well understood mental health issues.
This includes people living with complex mental health issues, and those who have an experience of complex trauma or are experiencing high levels of psychological distress.
Complex mental health issues include schizophrenia spectrum disorders, bipolar and related disorders, obsessive-compulsive and related disorders, personality disorders, trauma-related disorders, eating disorders, and severe depression and anxiety.
SANE is well-placed and eager to support the development of the National Stigma Reduction Strategy, and to ensure that people living with complex mental health issues experience rich and fulfilling lives, free from stigma and discrimination.