Protestors: Govt has been silent about mental health

Protestors: Govt has been silent about mental health
The protestors outside the Dáil today. Pic: Juno McEnroe

A series of protests have taken place around the country to protest at cuts to mental health funding.

Around 300 people attended a protest in Dublin, after €12m intended for mental health was sent elsewhere by the HSE.

Demostrators heard criticism of the poor turnout at a debate on mental health in the Dáil on Tuesday evening.

Mental health campaigner Conor Cusack says TDs needed to take more decisive action.

Mr Cusack told protestors outside the Dáil: "Martin Luther King once said, in the end it is not the words of our enemies that we remember, but the silence of our friends.

"Generations of our politicians have ensured that Dáil Eireann, our citadel of democracy and debate has been a temple of silence when it comes to the emotional wellbeing and mental health of our people."

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A number of mental health advocates also addressed the demonstration in Dublin which is being organised by Mental Health Reform and the Union of Students in Ireland (USI).

The director of Mental Health Reform, Shari McDaid, said: "Mental health needs to be a national priority for the next government".

"For far too long mental health services have been overshadowed by other so-called politically sensitive areas of the health service. It is time to demand parity of esteem for physical and mental health".

People also took to social media using the hashtag '#IAmAReason' to vent their anger at the situation.

Similar demonstrations are being held in Cork and Galway today, but Mental Health Reform say the only event being organised by them is the demonstration outside the Dáil.


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