POLITICS

Saying 'Loony Left' Stigmatises Mental Health Conditions, Says Tory

'We’ve all called an eccentric friend ‘bonkers’ or ‘mad as a box of frogs’.'

03/10/2017 20:15 | Updated 04 October 2017

A Tory campaigner hit out at his own party for using terms such as “the loony left” to attack Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party. 

Louis Mosley said the Conservatives were guilty of contributing to the “everyday stigma” of mental health problems by using the phrase to attack opponents. 

Speaking at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester, he said: “Fighting injustice, like charity, begins at home. 

“When we resolve to root out injustice, we could do worse than take a long, hard look at ourselves. 

Louis
Louis Mosley 

“Campaigners for women’s equality have talked persuasively about what they call everyday sexism but there is everyday stigma attached to mental illness too. 

“It can be something as simple as the expressions we use or the words we say. 

“We’ve all had a ‘mad’ or a ‘mental’ or a ‘manic’ day at work. We’ve all called the weather ‘schizophrenic’. We’ve all called an eccentric friend ‘bonkers’ or ‘mad as a box of frogs’. 

Jonathan Ernst / Reuters
It's wrong to call Donald Trump 'crazy', said Mosley

“For some, even Donald Trump might be irresistible as ‘crazy’ and I’m afraid the looney left are ‘looney’. 

“But when we use language like that we can sometimes forget how much harder we make it for people who do have a mental illness to talk about their condition and get the help they need.”

Mosley, who is chairman of the Hackney Conservative Association, praised Broxbourne MP Charles Walker, who was the first to talk openly about his obsessive compulsive disorder. 

Charles Walker
Charles Walker spoke out about OCD 

He also said it was also a positive move for the Government to enshrine parity of esteem for mental in law, but added: “But when we look for the causes of injustice, we must not exclude ourselves.

“We must recognise that no regulation, no act of parliament, no amount of money will fix the everyday ways, without meaning to, and with all the best will in the world, we can stigmatise mental illness.” 

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