Hull Mum says she feels let down by Government for failing to deliver children’s mental healthcare

Published: Thursday 4th June 2015 by KCFM

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Sally Burke says the Government are failing to live up to its promises on improving children’s mental healthcare in Hull.

Ever since her daughter Maisie was placed in a child mental health unit miles away from home, Hull Mum Sally Burke’s been campaigning for improved provision in East Yorkshire.

Maisie went missing for several hours during a recent home visit and was able to self harm after a delayed response from support services.

Sally told KCFM that it took the police 13 hours to respond to the call that Maisie was missing:

“When the police officers came the next morning, they’d explained they’d got a new system and it was quite difficult; But even 13 hours to respond to a normal child that’s gone missing seems a bit extreme to me, nevermind a child that’s vulnerable and on section.”

Humberside Police says it assessed Maisie as a medium risk and circulated her description among their officers.

Sally says out of hours support needs to be improved:

“We just do not have the skills, the professional out of hours 24/7 care what is needed for children that are in crisis, suffering from mental health; Especially for an autistic child as well, that struggles with change and likes to know what’s going to happen, there’s nothing.”

She says the system just seems to be going backward and nothing seems to be improving:

“I’ve felt let down by the Government for a long time. But after last week, it’s getting worse. They’re not making the changes that they promised. They say that they’re making these investments, [but] we’re not seeing these changes, we’re not feeling this investment. It’s worse.”

Sally believes there needs to be better planning for similar events:

“Everybody was lovely but there was no procedure for them to follow. They didn’t know what to do with a child with mental health problems. In the end, the staff from the Bury unit had to come and take Maisie back because there wasn’t anywhere in Hull for her to be or to go.”

In a statement, Humberside Police Detective Inspector, Alan Bentham, said:

“The incident was risk assessed as medium at 10.07pm and brought to the attention of the duty Detective Inspector. Checks were made of hospitals, custody, police intelligence systems and her description was circulated to officers on duty.

“As part of further enquiries officers attended the address of the caller the following day and they were informed that the missing girl had been located by family a short time after being reported missing. The officers then conducted a Safe and Well check to gather any information about her whereabouts while missing and ensure she had come to no harm.”

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Published: Thursday 4th June 2015 by KCFM

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