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PCC teams up with organisations in Bedfordshire to promote routes to support for World Mental Health Day
Bedfordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Kathryn Holloway, has teamed up with organisations across the county to promote the importance of mental health and highlight access to greater support ahead of World Mental Health Day (Saturday 10 October). 
This year's theme set by the World Federation for Mental Health is 'mental health for all’. The organisation is highlighting the need for greater access to specialist services for everyone, everywhere, in response to the ‘unprecedented impact of the current global health emergency due to Covid-19 that has impacted the mental health of millions of people’.
“As I sit within the heart of strategic groups advising Government on behalf of all policing in England and Wales in relation to the pandemic, I am very well aware of recommendations that organisations with front line workers will need to create bespoke mental health support for those who have lived through it under the most pressure, serving the public, which might be required for up to 15 years. 

“Ensuring appropriate care is in place for the officers, staff and volunteers of Bedfordshire Police was a very early focus of my Police and Crime Plan and I also fund a Mental Health Hub within Bedfordshire Police aimed at the public, providing named officers and mental health nurses to the most frequent users of blue light services to provide alternative support, plus specialist nurses in force control and my victim support service, Signpost, to advise officers and victim care specialists alike. 
"Access to mental health services is as essential for those in emergency roles as it is to the people they are supporting. I want everyone in the public sector as well as the public themselves to be aware of avenues to support, which is why I have used my platform to spread word of World Mental Health Day” said Commissioner Holloway

Working with Bedfordshire Police, the Clinical Commissioning groups, Local Authorities and Fire service the PCC has been encouraging partners to ‘share one thing’ across their networks, in a bid to increase the knowledge of access to services for mental health support.
The campaign has been shared on social media and encourages viewers to connect with someone who is not on social media, take notice of friends or colleagues who might be struggling and support them by sharing the ways they can access support.

For mental health support and services, please visit https://www.elft.nhs.uk/service/329/Bedfordshire-Mental-Health-and-Wellbeing-Service.
For more information on support and advice accessible in Bedfordshire for victims of crime, please visit www.signpostforbedfordshire.com or call the confidential free service on 0800 0282 887 and a specialist victim care coordinator will return the call.
 “It’s no good whatsoever providing mental health services if those in need of them have no idea how they can access the help and this is one small way to try to spread the word here in this county,” said PCC Holloway.