The conference is here!

Life Craft art group

Artwork for Social Power and Mental Health, by Life Craft art group.

Today is the first day of ‘Social Power and Mental Health’ – a conference that explores the diverse links between power, inequalities and mental health. Designed and produced in partnership with practitioners, researchers, academics, as well as experts by experience, at all stages, the conference hopes to foster a dialogue between a wide range of groups. Events will be running all this week, 19-23 April.

You can see the full programme of events here – and sign-up for individual panels and talks here. BSL interpreters and live captioning will be available at all of these events. They are also being lived-streamed on CRASSH’s YouTube channel.

An abbreviated programme is below. Be sure to check out our art gallery and film festival too!




Monday 19 April


16.00-17.30 (BST) – Panel Discussion: Covid and Mental Health


Nadia Mbonde (New York University)
Visions of Black Futurity: The Politics of Self and Community Care at the Intersection of the Double Pandemic of Covid-19 and Police Brutality

Lois Liao (London School of Economics)
Do you see what I see?: Applying Pierre Bourdieu’s Theories to the Intersectional Research of Social Class, Race and Mental Health

Cassie Lovelock (London School of Economics)
Covid-19, Mental Health Carers and Increased Dependency; How are Carers Coping?

Peter Unwin & Joy Rooney (Worcester University)
Effects of Covid-19 on the Mental Health of a University-Based Group of Service Users and Carers


Tuesday 20 April


17.00-18.00 (BST) – Panel Discussion: Black Mental Health


Aude Konan (they/them) (Writer and Playwright)

Furaha Asani (she/her) (Researcher, Teacher and Mental Health Advocate)

Maya McFarlane (she/her) (Women’s and Non-Binary Officer of the CUSU BME Campaign)


18.30-20.00 (BST) – Session 1: Psychiatry and Other Systems


Paper 1: Wendy Burn & Adrian James
The Stigma of Mental Illness, A View From the President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists

Paper 2: Ruth Smith and Anna Smith
Chemical Imbalance or Social Power Imbalance?

Paper 3: Neil Armstrong and Lamis Bayar
Power and Its Surprises: Locating and Dis-locating Asymmetries in Mental Healthcare

Paper 4:  Simon Duffy
Peer Supporter as Leaders in Community Development

Local Journey 1: Wendy Joyce Clarke


Wednesday 21 April


14.30-16.00 (BST) – Session 2: Activism and Hope

Paper 5: Samuel Hosking
Lessons to be Learned from the Experience of Funding Cuts to Mental Health Services at Lifecraft

Paper 6: Keira Pratt-Boyden
Stigma and Social Power: Mental Health Activism in London

Paper 7: Liz Rotherham
Building Resilience

Paper 8: Annie Whilby


18.30-20.00 (BST) – Keynote Session 1

Keynote: Imogen Tyler


Thursday 22 April


13.00-14.30 (BST) – Session 3: Social Inequalities and Justice

Paper 9: Rianna Walcott
On Mental Health Support Access and Treatment Outcomes for Black Patients

Paper 10: Peter Beresford
Challenging the Psychiatrisation of Politics and the Politics of Psychiatry

Paper 11: Helen Spandler
Restorative Justice: A Radical Aproach to Mental Health Reform?

Paper 12: Dorothy Gould
We Want Power Too: Perspectives from Service Users and Survivors from LGBTQ+ Communities


16.00-17.30 (BST) – Stigma and Survival

Paper 13: Sonji Shah and Nicole McIntosh
Peer Support and Abolition

Local Journey 2: Jo Fox

Paper 14: Helen Spandler
Hidden from History? Lesbian’s Experience of Psychiatry

Local Journey 3: Michael Brown


Friday 23 April


17.30-19.00 (BST) – Keynote Session 2

Keynote: Rai Waddingham
Listening to ‘Mad’ Voices in a Crazy World