Sunday, 15 August 2010

Mental Health Services and Chaotic Rough Sleepers

Chaotic and entrenched rough sleepers can be hard to track down by even the most experienced of outreach and front line workers. Can we really say they that their needs are being fully met? Are mental and physical health services willing to go a step further or do we have to wait for them to become so unwell they 'become a danger to themselves or others'?


  1. I become regularly frustrated by mental health services who refuse to acknowledge the importance of frequent contact with rough sleepers, directly on the streets. As a result we have to see client's mental and physical health deteriorate in front of our eyes. We continue to monitor them and discuss the need for an assessment, yet nothing can be done. Even the police are reluctant undertake a Section 136, as it takes them all day. I understand the implications of detaining someone against their own will, especially if they are considered not ill enough. However, there must be some kind of human rights issue here, I feel that it is morally wrong to leave someone to deteriorate on the streets, without eliminating all avenues of support. Mental health service need to be more proactive and get out on the streets, do informal assessment and actually talk with our clients.

  2. This is not a problem that is jus apparent on the streets though is it....