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Channel 4 to broadcast a series on mental health

Channel 4 is going to broadcast a season of documentaries and two 60 minute events discussing mental health stigma and discrimination, called 4 Goes Mad.

The two events will feature eight employees attempting to show that the stereotypes about those with mental health issues are wrong. A panel of employers will watch as they take part in various tasks, before deciding which are employable. The twist is that only a few of these employees will have mental health conditions. There will then also be documentaries narrated by Ruby Wax, who has depression, and Jon Richardson, who is exploring obsessive compulsive disorder in Jon Richardson: Am I OCD?.

A psychiatrist and psychologist will be on hand to help viewers better understand the mental health conditions they are presented with.

Lina Prestwood, the Factual Commissioning Editor who is overseeing 4 Goes Mad, says: "This lively and entertaining format will encourage viewers to see the person rather than the diagnosis. We're confident that the individuals who do have a mental health problem will be indistinguishable from other contributors as they appear across the schedule and that their appearance in this series will defy deeply-ingrained assumptions about people with mental health-problems - particularly relating to their ability to work."

Sounds good, right? Well, maybe. Because although the idea of a season dedicated to challenging tired, outdated and just plain wrong ideas about mental health is a good one, the fact that they've called it 4 Goes Mad slightly undoes all their good work. We'll just have to see what the series is like.

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