Decision details

Decision details

Mental Health

Decision Maker: Council

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


Councillor Iley-Williamson arrived and Councillors Fry, Pressel and Tidball left during this item.


Councillor Bely-Summers, seconded by Councillor Upton proposed the submitted motion as set out in the agenda and briefing note.


After debate and on being put to the vote the motion was agreed.


Council resolved to adopt the following motion:


The 2012 Health and Social Care Act opened the NHS to private companies, allowing them to bid for big contracts and sue the NHS if they didn’t get it.

The NHS is being dismantled piece by piece. This is compounded by the longest spell of austerity cuts in living memory and a lower investment in health compared to other EU countries.

Oxfordshire CCG is a serial under-funder of Mental Health services. It persistently spends well below the national average figure of 13.9%. For the people in Oxford it means rationing and difficulty accessing services for those who need it at a time when public awareness of mental illness is increasing and the rate of Oxfordshire pupils suffering from mental health problems tops national average (see Oxford Mail 8/10/19).

Unite which represents 100,000 members in the Health service have pointed out that psychological therapies have lost about 90% of their most senior clinicians since 2007 and that the trend needs to be reversed to prevent mentally ill people falling through the care net. Consultant psychology posts in adult psychology have recently been reduced by a third. The expectation is that less qualified staff will do more complex work with people who have serious mental health problems.

Oxfordshire Unison Health branch has highlighted the following:

Ø  a shortage of Mental Health nurses in psychiatric wards.

Ø  the recruitment and retention crisis being made worse by high cost of living in Oxfordshire.

Ø  overcrowded wards are creating stressful environments, hampering recovery.

Ø  the lack of decent housing and supportive placements prevents rapid discharge.

Ø  the lack of adequate community services to support people in crisis leading to readmission.

Put under pressure from politicians, local people, councillors and campaign groups , the county council reversed its decision over a £1.6 million cut in the Mental Health budget earlier this year but we will need to do much more just to stand still as our population grows.



1)    We call on the Leader of the City Council to write to the Secretary of State to urge them to increase Mental Health funding to meet national target and address the needs of the population.

2)    We call on the Systems Leaders Group for the Buckingham, Oxfordshire and West Berkshire Integrated Care System (BOB ICS) to ensure they will consult the local population on decisions made regarding Mental Health provision.

3)    We request a clear line of accountability to be outlined by BOB ICS to ensure that the public has confidence in its decisions.


Publication date: 04/12/2019

Date of decision: 25/11/2019

Decided at meeting: 25/11/2019 - Council