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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

Social mobility report

Friday, 4 May

The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Social Mobility launched an interim report this week titled Seven Key Truths about Social Mobility. At the heart of this topic – which the APPG acknowledge is often co-opted by those on both the left and right of the political spectrum – is the question of to what extent a person’s background (in terms of income or social class) influences where they end up (measured in the same way). The United Kingdom scores badly in comparison with other OECD countries – 50% of children here can have their prospects accurately predicted on the basis of their parents’ circumstances. This compares with 41% for France, 17% for Australia and 15% for Denmark.  I was surprised to see that the UK scores even worse than the USA (47%).

I was pleased to see that developing ‘personal resilience and emotional wellbeing’ is one of the seven ‘key truths’ that the report suggests can break the cycle of low mobility. The College has recently launched a broad campaign centred on recovery and resilience and I will write to the APPG Chair to offer our advice on this aspect of their work. I note that mental health also underpins another ‘key truth’ mentioned in the report, namely the significance of a child’s life experiences between the ages of 0-3 (or perhaps that should even be -9 months and 3) where good parental mental health is rightly mentioned as a key factor.

Wishing you all a good Bank Holiday weekend. And, after yesterday's blog, a Happy Star Wars Day today to all those those Star Wars fans out there (including my grandson) – May the fourth be with you.


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