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Extra £1.25bn to be spent on mental health services

An extra £1.25 billion will be spent on mental health services in England over the next five years, the Deputy Prime Minister has announced.

An extra £1.25 billion will be spent on mental health services over the next five years, the Deputy Prime Minister has announced Credit: PA

The money will help more than 100,000 youngsters struggling with mental health problems, Nick Clegg said today.

Making the announcement on a visit to Clock View Hospital in Liverpool, he said the manner in which children are currently treated is an "institutionalised form of cruelty".

"I think it will have a huge impact. You have got, on average, three children in every classroom in our country who have got mental health problems and are not being properly catered for, not being properly identified, not being properly supported.

This huge expansion - £1.25 billion over the course of the next parliament - will help around 110,000 children, children who at the moment are being let down by the system.

– Nick Clegg

The funding will also help improve support for new mothers, who had previously struggled with a "second-class mental health service", Mr Clegg said.

The £250 million a year funding will be confirmed in next week's Budget.

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Lib Dems promise extra Budget funds for mental health

Extra money for mental health services will be included in next week's Budget, Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has revealed.

Securing more money for mental health has been a key goal for the Liberal Democrats. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

The package will include £8.5 million over five years to support veterans as well as a component for children with mental health problems.

Securing more money for mental health has been a key goal for the Liberal Democrats and the package will more than double the amount available to help former service personnel.

Mr Alexander told The Times (£): "A mental health package will be announced in the Budget and there will be a children's component. Nick (Clegg) has made mental health a huge thing for our party - it's going to be one of the five key pledges on our manifesto."

The children's component will fund early intervention programmes to stop young people from developing serious and potentially fatal mental health conditions, the newspaper said.

The extra money to support veterans will allow 10 mental health teams to increase help and treatment for servicemen and women with some of the most complex needs.

The announcement comes just days after mental health charity Combat Stress told ITV News the number of British veterans of the Afghanistan conflict receiving treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder has increased from 102 in 2010 to 945 in 2015.

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Mental health reforms to lay down new rules for police

Teenagers with mental health problems will no longer be able to be held in police cells under sweeping reforms due to be announced today.

Home Secretary Theresa May is expected to reveal an overhaul of mental health laws in England and Wales.

The review is also expected to reduce the maximum length of detention from 72 to 24 hours Credit: PA

It comes after a senior Devon and Cornwall Police officer complained the force had had to hold a 16-year-old girl with mental health problems in a cell for two days because there was no hospital bed available anywhere in the UK.

The review is also expected to reduce the maximum length of detention of someone in mental distress from 72 hours to 24, and to change guidance so that police cells can only be used for adults when their behaviour becomes so extreme that they cannot be managed elsewhere.

Mental health campaigners have welcomed the move, but warned more beds are needed if the reforms are to be effective.

Police chief's outburst sees teen taken out of custody

One of the country's most senior policemen has condemned the provision of mental health care for children in Britain as "unacceptable."

Paul Netherton, Assistant Chief Constable of Devon and Cornwall Police, took the highly unusual step of speaking out on social media after his officers were forced to keep a teenage girl in custody because, he said, there was no proper facility for her anywhere in the UK.

After his outburst, she has been found a bed tonight. But as ITV News reporter Duncan Golestani has more on what her plight has exposed - what some call - a worrying lack of care for the vulnerable

Mind: Teen in police custody 'terrible and shameful'

The chief executive of the mental health charity Mind has slammed the "terrible and shameful" situation which meant a girl with mental health issues was held by polic'

This is a terrible and shameful situation. Being in mental health crisis can be terrifying and life-threatening, and people need urgent care from mental health services.

– Chief executive of Mind Paul Farmer

Paul Farmer said a police cell was a "completely inappropriate place to put someone who is so unwell", adding: "This whole episode shows how thinly spread NHS mental health services are."

'Thousands' of mental health patients taken into custody

Thousands of people with mental health issues are being taken into police custody every year because of a lack of mental health care provision, a leading charity has warned.

Mark Winstanley, chief executive of Rethink Mental Illness, said while the teenage girl being held for two days was “troubling”, it was far from an isolated incident.

Each year thousands of people with serious mental health problems are being held in police cells, including many children and teenagers, because the right services either don't exist in their community or are completely overstretched.

Being held in a police cell can be extremely distressing, and should only ever happen as an absolute last resort.

But many people are being turned away from 'places of safety', because of staff shortages or lack of spaces. In some parts of the country, there are no health-based places of safety full-stop.

– Mark Winstanley, Rethink Mental Illness

The girl has now been found a place locally, NHS bosses have confirmed.

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