Mental health

The Roadmap Ahead

Fear

What if I can't stand the train
without the carriage to myself?
What if I can't stretch and strain
to reach up to the luggage shelf?

What if all the outside seats
are taken and the queue's too long?
And I don't recognise the streets
and can't see left or right or wrong?

Your Place

Joe at his flat

Last year, I wrote a poem (a pantoum) called 'This Place' about visiting my son in the adolescent psychiatric unit where he spent four months (read it here).

He now has his own flat, living independently with support. So I decided to write a follow-up poem of the same length in the same style, hoping that this will illustrate the wonderful progression.

Mental health in call centres: Get unionised!

Mental health in call centres

Call centre working is a danger to your mental health

Depression, anxiety, panic attacks, high blood pressure, sleeping problems and even suicidal thoughts are common among call centre workers.

More than 4 in 5 respondents to a Unison survey said that work made them stressed.

In another survey [Mind], when asked how workplace stress affected them:

This Place

I come to see you in this place
A train, a bus, a longish walk
A mask of growth veneers your face
We picnic, catch up, laugh and talk

A train, a bus, a longish walk
They brought you here to make you well
We picnic, catch up, laugh and talk
You've questions, jokes and tales to tell

Speaking out about deaths in care

Speaker

Janine proposing a motion condemning deaths of autistic and learning disabled people in care, at TUC Disabled Workers' Conference in May 2019.

***

On 21 March this year, an inquest ruled that the death of Colette McCulloch was avoidable.

Colette was thirty-five years old when she died. She was autistic, and in a hostile society, she had become mentally unwell.

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