Election update: voting rights for patients 

With the deadline to register to vote fast approaching, we have joined forces with Rethink Mental Illness to remind people of the voting rights of hospital inpatients. 

Voters in inpatient settings have the same right to vote as anyone else – even if they are receiving treatment away from where they live. Being detained in hospital under the Mental Health Act does not affect voting rights. The only people in the UK who cannot cast a ballot are sentenced prisoners.

Unfortunately, many are still unaware of their voting rights, or the options of voting by proxy or postal votes. They may also struggle to complete administrative requirements, such as acquiring acceptable voter ID.

That is why we released a statement with Rethink, so mental health staff and carers can help people with mental illness apply their democratic rights.

We’ve also published a number of useful resources on our website, so you can help support people who want to register before the deadline on Tuesday 18 June.

Election campaign continues

This week we have also been continuing our raise the profile of our manifesto in the lead up to the election. We have been calling on all parties to prioritise the prevention of mental ill-health and recognise that there is no health without mental health. The manifesto sets out sets out five key areas the next Government should focus on including:

  1. Reducing the occurrence and, therefore, the prevalence of severe mental illness.
  2. Reversing the mental health crisis
  3. Achieving parity of esteem between physical and mental health
  4. Supporting the mental health workforce
  5. Equitably funding mental health research and data collection to improve understanding and facilitate innovation.

If you would like to get involved, please see our digital toolkit on the election section of our website. Here you can join our manifesto campaign, read our guidance on political engagement and keep up to date on our influencing activity.

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