Mental Health Reform, the national coalition on mental health welcomes a commitment in the new Action Plan for Housing and Homelessness to address the housing needs of people with mental health difficulties.
Commenting on Rebuilding Ireland: Action Plan for Housing and Homelessness, Dr Shari McDaid, Director of MHR said “In today’s plan the Department of Housing commits to work with the HSE and local authorities on all housing issues for people transitioning from HSE accommodation and for clients of the mental health services living in community-based accommodation. We welcome this commitment and look forward to further details on how this will work in practice.”
According to Dr McDaid “while the promise to increase the delivery of social housing contained in today’s plan is welcome, it was disappointing that no commitment was made to ensure that a proportion of social housing is allocated to people with mental health difficulties”.
Dr McDaid added: “In order to prevent inappropriate and costly long-term stays in acute mental health units, it is vital that people in these units who have a housing need can access social housing quickly”.
Mental Health Reform welcomed a number of other initiatives contained in the Action Plan such as a commitment to improve mental health and primary care services for homeless people, the extension of tenancy sustainment measures nationwide and increased rent supplement and Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) limits.
However Dr McDaid added: “there is no mention of a dedicated funding stream to provide medium and long-term visiting support to individuals with mental health difficulties. Mental Health Reform has been advocating for funding for visiting support since 2013 and it is vital that the Government acts to provide this funding in the 2017 budget.”
Dr McDaid is available for interview
About Mental Health Reform
Mental Health Reform is the national coalition promoting improved mental health services and the social inclusion of people with mental health difficulties. The coalition currently has 54 members. See www.mentalhealthreform.ie for more details. Mental Health Reform acknowledges the support of the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government’s Scheme to Support National Organisations 2014-2016.
For more information please contact:
Communications and Campaigns Officer,
Mental Health Reform,
Tel: (086) 171 1920 / 01 874 9469.