Aimed at mental health practitioners, parents, and those working with young people and vulnerable groups, organisers have described this convention as an event that will ‘focus on ways to ensure the maintenance good mental health and how best people from African Caribbean communities can navigate the mental health system’.
Experts hope this event will raise awareness about the consistent failings of statutory services in their treatment of black service users. They are keen for light to be shed on the little known mental health crisis within Briton’s African Caribbean communities, and the negative effect it is having on black families across the UK.
‘It’s important to note that black people do not have a high prevelance of mental illness than any other ethnic group. However professionals working in this sector understand how the services operate and have the latest information on this issue, while people from African Caribbean communities do not.
This uneven power dynamic is reflected to some extent in the over representation of black people in high and medium secure settings.’
‘Any real commitment to change this situation would mean long term ring fenced funding for community based services, which are run by people who come from this community, if the reduction in admission rates and improvement in recovery rates of African Caribbean service users is to be achieved,’ Matilda MacAttram, director of Black Mental Health UK and a speaker at this weekends event said.
Speakers at this weekend’s half day conference are: Malcolm Phillips, psychologist and manager of the Oremi Centre, Polymin Muhammad , NoI Ministry of Health, Matilda MacAttram director, Black Mental Health UK, Rameri Moukam director, Pattigift African-Centred Mental Health Centre.