The No 10 “Partygate Scandal” has deteriorating the public’s mental health, Sir Keir Stammer said as he planned to reform the NHS under a Labor government.
The Labor leader said in a speech at the Fabian Society conference in London that young people were particularly affected by mental health struggles during the coronavirus pandemic.
As part of his vision of the NHS, he pledged that a Labor Administration would establish a mental health care facility for youth in every community and provide specialist support in schools.
I think the last few weeks have gotten worse with regards to PartyGate
Raising questions about policy after his speech, Sir Keir said the revelations of the coronavirus breach in Downing Street exacerbated the issues people are facing with their mental wellbeing.
He said: “I think, by the way, the Partygate scandal, for lack of a better word … what has happened in recent weeks, where it has become clear that when the vast majority of the British public came to know about laws made by the government. , the Government and the Prime Minister were partying in Downing Street.
“I think it has added to the mental health stress because a lot of people are now asking themselves, ‘Why on earth did I do this while they were doing what they were doing?’
“So I think, before the pandemic, we had mental health issues that have gotten way worse during the pandemic, especially among young people.
“And I think the last few weeks with respect to PartyGate have only gotten worse.”
During his speech on Saturday, the opposition leader promised that a Labor administration would ensure that people in need of mental health treatment are seen “in less than a month”.
“We will recruit more than 8,500 mental health professionals to support more than a million people every year,” he said.
“Every school will have specialist support, every community will have an open access mental health center for young people.”
He accused the prime minister of being “too busy defending his rule breaking” to change the NHS fortunes, focusing the health service more on preventing people from getting sick and adopting a “home first” policy for care. called upon.
“We must develop new methods of care to help with long-term conditions, we need to think about mental as well as physical health, and we need to think not only about how we treat patients rather how do we prevent them from getting sick in the first place,” he told the conference.
The former Director of Public Prosecutions accused the Conservatives of creating a “mess” of the NHS.
He said: “The first task of a Labor government will be to remove the mess that the Tories have created to the NHS.
“The previous Labor government reduced the waiting time from 18 months to 18 weeks. We have to do the same thing again.”
He vowed that Labor would “invest properly to bring down the wait list and that we would begin by recruiting, training and, importantly, retaining the staff we needed”.
Sir Keir spoke of his “anger” at the state of the NHS, and said the party would “make well-being as important as national economic output”.
I said a Clean Air Act would also be introduced to tackle the “silent killer” of air pollution.
He said the party has a five-point plan for the transformation of social care, taking an “entirely different approach” than the shadow cabinet government’s national insurance hike, which was introduced in April to fund social care and the NHS backlog. is to reduce.
Sir Keir said Shadow Health Secretary Wes Streeting would lay out a plan for living with Covid in the days to come.