Read more >

Catherine West MP is one of 60 MPs and Peers calling on the government to take action to help new mums struggling with depression.  The cross party group have written to Steve Brine, the minister for public health and primary care, demanding that all mothers in England have an assessment of their emotional and mental health carried out by a GP, practice nurse or health visitor.  This separate maternal check would be in addition to the baby's six week postnatal check.  At present, checking the baby's health is a stipulation under the GPs contract, but doing the same for the mother is not.

Catherine said: "Half of all new mums struggling with depression say they weren't asked by health staff about their mental health.  At the moment, it isn't compulsory and many mothers say that a discussion about their emotional and mental wellbeing is either forgotten or is done in a hurry at the end of the baby check appointment. 

The evidence suggests that adding this new requirement to the contract would significantly help improve maternal mental health for a very modest investment of around £20m per annum, against a total estimated £8bn in costs stemming from the adverse consequences of perinatal mental illness.  It’s by no means the only answer but it would be a good start.

I hope the minister will respond positively." 

Catherine West MP supports #hiddenhalf campaign for new mum mental health checks

Go to the post

Catherine West MP said: "The situation facing the Palestinian people living in Gaza is absolutely appalling. I utterly condemn the actions taken by the Israeli Government against Palestinian protesters, their use of excessive and in many cases lethal force is not simply disproportionate, it is wholly unjustifiable. These actions do nothing to facilitate the peace process, rather it continues to fuel the cycle of hatred and resentment between both peoples.

Yesterday marked the bloodiest day of this conflict since the 2014 war: 58 Palestinians were killed, 6 of them were children, and one of them was a baby of 8 months old. The number of Palestinians wounded from IDF attacks has risen to over 2700. Given this most recent wave of bloodshed, it is now more critical than ever that an immediate ceasefire is secured, not just to end the bloodshed on both sides of this conflict, but to provide the necessary environment for the peace process to restart.

The right to protest peacefully is a fundamental tenet of civilised society and it must be protected, but in instances where violence has erupted, these occurrences must be condemned and restraint urged. There are concerns that Hamas has directly encouraged such violence, if this is found to be the case, this Government must challenge President Abbas directly on this unacceptable incitement to violence.

The response from the UK Government to the ongoing crisis in Gaza and in the wider Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been limp and wholly inadequate, especially with regards to the reckless actions of President Trump. Donald Trump’s deeply insensitive and provocative decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem has set the peace process back years. It is incumbent upon the UK Government to challenge the US President on his actions and help lead the international community to help both parties secure a lasting peace in the region. In addition to this, we must have an independent and impartial UN-led inquiry into this most recent outbreak of violence."

Catherine West MP's statement on the killing of Palestinians in Gaza

Go to the post

Catherine West MP

Liquid syntax error: Error in tag 'subpage' - No such page slug cookies