Over a third of LGBT Londoners are suffering with mental health issues

Over a third of LGBT people living in the London are suffering from mental health issues, a rate 15% higher than the general population.

The report put together by the London Assemble Health Committee found that 40% of LGBT people in the capital have experienced a form of mental health issue.

It also found that one in six LGBT people have experienced a homophobic, biphobic or transphobic hate crime at some point in their life.

The committee called upon specialist support to be provided to LGBT people.

“Without specialist support, LGBTI people will continue to experience mental health inequality, stigma and discrimination,” the report stated. “LGBTI people need to be more directly involved in shaping services that meet their needs.”

Both “generalist” and “mainstream” services need to be reformed so as health providers are better equipped to meet the needs of LGBT people.

The report called for special training to begin with GP’s, it stressed that this is the first port of call for LGBT people and they may feel uncomfortable disclosing their sexual orientation.

Authors of the study have urged the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to do more for LGBT mental health as he is in “unique” place to provide change.

“The Mayor is well placed to push for more joined-up action at a panLondon level,” the report stated. “It is important that action for better mental health is delivered, not just considered.”

Chairman of the committee, Dr Onkar Sahota, said: “At the start of LGBT History Month we want this call heard loud and clear by the mayor. Action is needed now to tackle the urgent mental health needs of LGBTI people.

“Time has run out for some and the mayor needs to take firm and decisive action on his mental health promises to LGBTI Londoners,” he added.