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'EastEnders' wins mental health gong

By
Lacey Turner aka 'Stacey Slater'

© Rex Features / Julian Makey

EastEnders has scooped a prize at the Mind Mental Health Media Awards for a second consecutive year.

In a ceremony held at the British Film Institute in London last night, the ongoing story of Stacey Slater's bipolar disorder came out on top in the 'Soaps' category, being recognised as an accurate and powerful portrayal of mental distress.

A statement released by Mind confirmed that the event's judges were impressed with the "outstanding way in which EastEnders developed Stacey's experience of bipolar disorder without letting it define her character".

The performances of Lacey Turner - who plays Stacey - and her screen mother Gillian Wright (Jean) were also highly commended by the panel.

Speaking of the show's victory, Turner commented: "I am thrilled that EastEnders has won this award. Playing the bipolar storyline was one of the biggest achievements that I have had at EastEnders and I was honoured that I was entrusted with the task of portraying an issue that so many people are affected by.

"From the letters and feedback I have received, I am glad that EastEnders was brave enough to raise awareness of such a sensitive issue."

Meanwhile, Mind's chief executive Paul Farmer said: "EastEnders is a fantastic programme that never fails to grip the nation and the storyline involving Stacey Slater developing bipolar disorder is an excellent example of how broadcasters can cover mental health issues in a responsible, forward-thinking way to produce hugely watchable TV."

Emmerdale had also been nominated in the 'Soaps' category in recognition of the storyline which saw Aaron Livesy (Danny Miller) attempt to take his own life as he struggled to come to terms with his sexuality.

Stacey's plotline previously received the Mind 'Making A Difference' trophy at last year's event. Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

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