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Mental Health Charity Says Mental Illness is Rising Due to Cost-of-Living Crisis

A national mental health charity is calling for more action to help people with the rising cost of living, as the number of people accessing its crisis services with suicidal thoughts has doubled in 2022.

Mental Health Concern helps people who are experiencing mental health crisis, through its Together in a Crisis (TIAC) service. The charity is reporting that its TIAC services in Sunderland, South Tyneside, Northumberland, North Tyneside, and Newcastle upon Tyne have seen the number of people accessing crisis support increase by 30% since January.

The charity has also seen a 121% year-on-year rise in people with suicidal thoughts accessing the service. Many of these cases are linked to difficult financial situations, as more people struggle to pay their living costs.

With the number of people facing poverty this winter set to increase, Mental Health Concern is calling on the Government to increase investment in statutory and non-statutory mental health crisis services, broaden the eligibility for free NHS prescriptions, and increase investment and contract assurance for voluntary, community, and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations to ensure that support and resources can continue to be provided to people to help ease the financial strain.

Adam Crampsie, Chief Executive of Mental Health Concern said: “The latest figures from our Together in a Crisis services confirm the impact of the cost-of-living crisis on the health and wellbeing of our communities.

“Bills are set to increase as we move into the colder months and, as inflation continues to rise, many people’s financial situations will only get more difficult. This is especially true for lower earners in our community. This isn’t about tightening belts or ‘feeling the pinch’ – it is about people being forced into making impossible decisions daily.”

Crampsie added: “Our team is working courageously to help provide the necessary support for those who need it, but we can only do so much. We need immediate action from the Government as soon as possible, to help ease the financial strains on our communities and prevent the situation from escalating any further.”

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