by: The Voice Online
published: 4 July 2013
Mikey Powell, Kingsley Burrell, Sean Rigg, Olaseni Lewis, Roger Sylvester and many more – the tragic roll call of names of those who have died in police custody were read out several times during the UK’s first ever public forum on black mental health.
Senior political figures joined forces with police chiefs, health professionals, and also families of the dead who gave traumatic accounts of their long fight seeking justice for their loved ones.
Those directly involved in policing and mental health vowed it will be a turning point in the campaign for justice, empathy and expertise when dealing with those in mental crisis.
The national conference was organised by the Wolverhampton-based African Caribbean Community Initiative (ACCI) and Black Mental Health UK (BMH UK), with the theme Mental Health, Policing & Black Britain: Coercion or Care?
Noman Lamb, Minister for Care and Support, one of more than a dozen high profile speakers, made a public commitment to meet with BMH UK and ACCI for round table discussions on the issue.