A letter was written by the NSPCC back on the 16th of May and it was signed by 25 Organisations most of which are charities along with 14 MPs. The information about the letter was published in a number of settings including the Children and Young People Now magazine that was written by Joe Lepper with the headline
MPS AND CHARITIES BACK CAMPAIGN TO BOLSTER HEALTH VISITING SERVICES
The article can be found here and it provides a link to the letter which listed the 25 organisations and the MPs who are listed below. There was one Conservative MP, Tim Loughton in East Worthing and Shoreham and the Green Party MP, Caroline Lucas from Brighton Pavilion. There were also five Liberal Democrat MPs and seven Labour MPs. The letter begins with the following words:
Dear Secretary of State,
New parents experiencing mental health problems risk being overlooked, because of the rapid deterioration of universal health visiting services. This compounds the unprecedented strain COVID-19 has put on parents’ mental health. Today, parents and professionals are in Westminster to present you with a petition signed by almost 22,000 people across England. Together, we urge you to improve access to perinatal mental health support, to rebuild health visiting services and to invest more in family help.
Health visitors play a vital role in identifying parents experiencing mental health problems and providing or arranging for support. But the health visiting workforce in England is at an all-time low and there are not enough health visitors to meet the level of need. Many families are not receiving the five health visiting reviews they are entitled to, or these vital checks are being delivered remotely, which makes it harder for professionals to identify perinatal mental health problems. In 2021, one in five babies in England did not receive their 12-month health visiting review, with a total of over 106,000 babies missing out.
It ends with these last few words
We welcome the Government’s ‘Best Start for Life’ vision, the £100 million announced for perinatal and infant mental health, and the focus on family help in the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care. However, we are deeply concerned that under-resourced health visiting services are causing a postcode lottery of access to support. It takes real courage for parents to open up about mental health, and when they do, a helping hand should be there. Together, we are fighting for a fair start for every family.
The information on the NSPCC website is here. Since that letter was sent over to Sajid Javid there is no indication that he or indeed any other MPs have raised this theme in Parliament. Perhaps the MPs who signed the letter could raise it in the next few days and indeed perhaps more MPs could endorse it? The MP signatories are:
Tim Loughton MP for East Worthing and Shoreham
Ed Davey MP for Kingston and Surbiton
Sarah Champion MP for Rotherham
Sarah Olney MP for Richmond Bell
Ribeiro-Addy MP for Streatham
Dan Carden MP for Liverpool Walton
Munira Wilson MP for Twickenham
Daisy Cooper MP for St Albans
Andy McDonald MP for Middlesborough
Kim Johnson MP for Liverpool Riverside
Wera Hobhouse MP for Bath
Caroline Lucas MP for Brighton
Virendra Sharma MP for Ealing Southall
Tony Lloyd MP for Rochdale