The Labour Party has included putting a mental health professional in every school, reducing NHS waiting times and expanding patient choice in its manifesto.

Its wide range of positive commitments to mental health reflect many of our manifesto policies and longstanding campaign asks.

Children and young people

We particularly welcome Labour’s continued commitment to putting a mental health professional in every school. This is costed at £175 million for the first year and reflects our recommendation for a counsellor to be appointed in every school. Likewise, Labour has pledged a rollout of new Young Futures hubs to provide open access mental health services for children and young people in every community. We championed the establishment of these through our work with partners in the Fund the Hubs campaign.

Expanding NHS mental health support

Labour has pledged to improve access to NHS mental health support by reducing wait times for mental health services, appointing 8,500 mental health professionals who can support both children and adults. This workforce will be specially trained to support those at risk to reduce suicide cases.

Labour will also modernise mental health legislation to expand patient choice, autonomy, rights and support.

Lastly, they have pledged to open Neighbourhood Health Centres, uniting existing health professionals - including mental health specialists - under one roof.

These commitments echo our call for improved access to, and choice of, NHS mental health services to help address growing demand. We additionally welcome Labour’s commitment to giving mental health the same attention and focus as physical health. We’ve called for parity of esteem between physical and mental health support in our manifesto, and in our wider campaigning.

Conversion therapy

Labour has also committed to a trans-inclusive ban on conversion therapy, a policy recommendation that we called for in our own manifesto.

Our Four Nations Lead Steve Mulligan said: “It’s pleasing to see mental health as a central element of Labour’s offer to the electorate during this election.   

“We’re delighted Labour is making an important commitment to put mental health professionals in schools and to expand youth hubs. We have been pleased to engage closely with Labour on both these policies to ensure counselling is rooted in these commitments.”   

“We additionally welcome the pledge for the expansion of the mental health workforce through the employment of 8,500 mental health professionals and the trialling of new Neighbourhood Health Centres. We’ll continue to make a strong case for Labour to call upon the trained yet underutilised counselling workforce to fill these important roles.

“We welcome the leadership shown by Labour on taking forward a trans-inclusive ban on conversion therapy. This has been pushed into the long grass by the current Conservative Government, despite being a manifesto commitment since 2017.”    

“While there’s recognition that long waits for mental health support, are contributing to the rise in economic inactivity, there’s little clarity on how Labour will address this beyond a commitment to improve local employment support. A further gap is the need to ensure that people in work are given early and accessible support. Whoever forms the next Government will need to address sickness absence and burnout by improving access to workplace counselling and other appropriate interventions."

Labour's manifesto mental health commitments

The counselling and mental health measures set out in Labour’s manifesto are:   

• Reforming the NHS to ensure we give mental health the same attention and focus as physical health.
• Providing access to specialist mental health professionals in every school, so every young person has access to early support to address problems before they escalate.
• Bringing down waiting times down and intervening earlier by recruiting an additional 8,500 new mental health professionals to treat children and adults. To reduce the lives lost to suicide, these new staff will be specially trained to support people at risk.
• Setting up Young Futures hubs to provide open access mental health services for children and young people in every community.
• Trialling Neighbourhood Health Centres, bringing together existing services such as family doctors, district nurses, care workers, physiotherapists, palliative care, and mental health specialists under one roof.
• Delivering a full trans-inclusive ban on conversion practices, while protecting the freedom for people to explore their sexual orientation and gender identity.
• Modernising mental health legislation to give patients greater choice, autonomy, enhanced rights and support, and ensure everyone is treated with dignity and respect throughout treatment.
• Ensuring veterans have access to the support – including for mental health needs.

We’re providing an overview of all the pollical party manifestos as they’re published throughout the General Election campaign.    
You can support our General Election campaign by sharing our manifesto commitments with your local candidates via our easy-to-use online form.