Magazine article Public Finance

Poor Mental Health Preventing Many from Working

Magazine article Public Finance

Poor Mental Health Preventing Many from Working

Article excerpt

Work and Pensions Secretary James Purnell has issued a warning about the rise in the number of people claiming benefits for poor mental health.

Speaking at the Local Wellbeing Conference, hosted by the Improvement and Development Agency, the New Economics Foundation and the London School of Economics, Pumell said it was a 'pressing issue' for the government.

'We need to remove the stigma around mental health. We need to transform the support we offer for depression and we need to understand much better how to help people with mental health issues back into work,' he said.

He added that research on 'wellbeing' provided 'insights which should shape policies across government'. The Department for Work and Pensions would look at the viability of a 'major long-term research project' on wellbeing and work, he added. There was increasingly robust evidence that worklessness contributed to 'poverty of wellbeing', and tackling the issue required 'a commitment to empowerment'. …

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