Both the Centre for Mental Health and the Mental Health Policy Group have issued general election proposals that name parenting programs as necessary elements for good mental health policy.
The Centre for Mental Health’s proposal uses an economic argument for adopting the Triple P – Positive Parenting Program, which it says could improve outcomes for children with conduct disorder “at relatively low cost”. The proposal says evidence-based parenting programs could generate a 300 percent return on investment for government.
“We want the next Government to prioritize children with behavioral problems, to champion early intervention and to prevent later inequalities by acting quickly to help families when they need it,” the report says.
The Mental Health Policy Group’s Manifesto for Better Mental Health also called on the next U.K. Government to help families with evidence-based parenting programs.
“Children with serious behavioral problems have the poorest life chances of any group of young people,’’ the manifesto states.
“Yet evidence-based parenting programs can be highly cost-effective and can improve the well-being of the whole family, as well as the life chances of their children.
“We call on the next Government to commit to invest, across the nation, in parenting programs for families who need them.’’
Triple P founder and director of the University of Queensland’s Parenting and Family Support Centre, Professor Matt Sanders, says the calls to make evidence-based support for families more accessible should be supported by policy makers.
“Governments around the world are starting to recognize the need to address mental health through proven early intervention and prevention methods,’’ Professor Sanders says.