We must do more to tackle stigma around men’s mental heath

Alan Kelly TD
19 November 2018

Speaking on International Men’s Day, Labour Party Health spokesperson, Alan Kelly TD, has said we must do more to tackle the stigma around men’s mental health.

Deputy Kelly said:

“Rates of young men dying by suicide are still too high and rates of self-harm amongst young men are still incredibly worrying. Urgent action is needed to reverse these trends.

“Our culture wrongly encourages men to be ‘strong and silent’, and this must be challenged. Men, particularly young men and those in isolated rural areas, must be encouraged through their families, schools, clubs, and networks like the GAA and specific mental health support groups, to view good mental health as a real strength, and to speak out if they are experiencing any difficulties.

“One of the major hurdles to accessing healthcare professionals is the cost. With consultations and appointments regularly costing between €50 and €80 per session.

“In our alternative Budget Labour proposed providing €3 million to provide free access for young people up to the age of 25.

“Getting young people the help they need as quickly as possible should be a priority for this government. Anxiety surrounding education, employment, the growing precariousness in housing, is growing.

“We can talk about the value of mental health awareness as much as we want, but if we don’t follow that up with action to make help accessible to everyone then it’s nothing but talk.”

 

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