The Healing Our Broken Village Conference annually addresses the specific mental health challenges confronting black communities, advocating for substantial change with three key requests:
- Long-term Funding: A comprehensive investment plan is sought, integrated into core healthcare business planning, to ensure sustained funding for the Ethnicity and Mental Health Improvement Project (EMHIP). EMHIP aims to tackle racial disparities in mental health services.
- Community-Centric Strategy: The conference calls for a mainstream mental health strategy redirecting professional resources to frontline communities. This strategy supports evidence-based, co-produced initiatives that aim to significantly reduce disparities in access, experiences, and outcomes within mental health services for black communities.
- Diversity and Representation: To combat the underrepresentation of Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities within the healthcare system, a strategy is needed to actively identify and support individuals from these communities. This approach creates accessible pathways into education, training, and employment within mental health services, fostering diversity at all levels.
The conference highlights the urgency of these requests, emphasizing decades of disparities in mental health services for BME communities. Attendees demand concrete actions to improve access and conditions. To ensure transparency, a Community Panel oversees the healthcare system's response. We aim to achieve equity and justice in mental health services by fostering collaboration with healthcare partners and garnering public support.