Matilda MacAttram is founder and director of Black Mental Health UK (BMH UK), a human rights campaigns group established in 2006 to raise awareness and address the stigma associated with mental illness within African Caribbean communities.

 She has spoken out publicly against the deaths and ill treatment of black patients detained in psychiatric hospitals and other custodial settings and changed the public debate around black people and mental illness.

She is a member of the stakeholder group of the Independent Advisory Panel (IAP) on Deaths in Custody, which is part of the Ministerial Council on Deaths in Custody.

In September this year she launched digital magazine entitled The Solution The only publication of its kind to focus on the African Caribbean experience of mental health services. the first edition was endorsed by the government’s Care Services Minister Paul Burstow MP, and was circulated to over one million readers.

Matilda is a member of an advisory panel for the Government’s Ministerial Advisory Board on Mental Health and Equalities. She was also on the working group of the Centre for Social Justice’s Mental Health Review and she currently sits on the advisory board of Mental Health and Justice Research Project, which is examining how law enforcement agencies treat victims of crime who have used mental health services.

Matilda also sits on the editorial board for the Journal of Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care.

In 2008 she launched a successful campaign against the way the National Criminal DNA database ciminalised innocent mental health service users and almost every family from Britain’s African Caribbean communities.

In 2010 she launched Back Mental Health UK’s election manifesto  which was supported by over 40 grass roots organisations, calling for the prevention of deaths following restraint within secure psychiatric settings.

Also a journalist and public speaker, her work is regularly published in the specialist, community and national press and she is frequently asked to comment in print and broadcast media on issues arising from BMH UK’s work.

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