Nottinghamshire Police registered 19,973 incidents with a mental health code last year.
New research by think tank, Parliament Street has revealed the extent of lack of funding and provision related to mental health incidents. By analysing police case reports, Parliament Street identified more than 300,000 cases related to people with a mental disorder, who felt they had no other support around them.
Danny Bowman, mental health spokesperson for Parliament Street said: “The police are dealing with these issues instead of the people who should be dealing with them.”
“The police should never be the people dealing with these situations.”
Danny Bowman, mental health spokesman for Parliament Street
Wendy Hemsworth, who has been treated by mental health services in Nottingham since 2010 blames the cuts.
“There are no spaces in hospitals, the waiting lists for therapy are huge”
She said: “to get support of any kind you need to be in a crisis, even being suicidal doesn’t necessarily get you help anymore. Just a few weeks ago I cut my wrist, three times in an angry frustrated rage in the hope that I would bleed to death. I ended up going to a walk in centre, where they glued my wounds and was sent on my way.”
“There are no spaces in hospitals, the waiting lists for therapy are huge – my referral for specialist therapy was done in July 2015. I am still on a waiting list. All of this means that the police are having to deal with the fall out.”
“People experiencing mental health crisis need the right care”
A Government spokesman said: “People experiencing mental health crisis need the right care in the right place, not a police cell.”
“We’re investing £30 million in providing more alternative places of safety, have more than halved the number of people detained under a mental health section in a police cell in the last year and are entirely banning the use of police stations for this purpose for under 18s.”
Sgt Anthony Horsnall of Nottinghamshire Police said mental health was identified as a priority in the Police and Crime Plan.
“We have made significant improvements in the way we deal with mental health and have excellent relationships with our partners including Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust,” he said.