The Unite union’s mental health lead wants a dedicated secretary of state for mental health, ringfenced funding and an end to the pay cap

Dave Munday was recently at a Mental Health Nurses Association meeting in Salford to discuss “the drastic decline” in the number of mental health nurses in England, while Theresa May was telling Jeremy Corbyn at prime minister’s questions that there are now “more nurses in our hospitals than we had in 2010”. It was 5 July, the 69th anniversary of the NHS.

Munday is the professional mental health lead at Unite – the trade union of which the MHNA is part. While it is true that nursing numbers overall have increased since 2010, for mental health nursing, the numbers in the NHS in England were down over the same period, with some 5,000 fewer nurses in March 2017 compared with 2010 figures, according to NHS Digital figures.

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