The Cross Party Oireachtas Group on Mental Health re-launched yesterday with support from across the political spectrum. The purpose of the Group is to promote political activity, awareness and understanding of mental health issues within the Oireachtas.
The first meeting of the re-launched Group hosted the launch of a new Oireachtas Members’ Briefing Pack on Mental Health by Journalist Carol Hunt. The pack has been produced by Mental Health Reform in partnership with Amnesty International Ireland and outlines political solutions to the blocks hindering mental health reform.
New co-convenors Deputy Dara Calleary (FF), Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin (SF), Deputy Simon Harris (FG), Senator Susan O’Keeffe (L) and Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan (Technical Group), along with politicians from all parties met with representatives from the mental health sector in Leinster House yesterday evening (18/05/11). They discussed the need for all party support for reforming our mental health services and protecting the rights of people with mental health problems.
The Oireachtas Members’ Briefing Pack on Mental Health contains six political recommendations:
1. Greater accountability for reform of mental health
2. A national directorate for mental health services
3. Amend the Mental Health Act 2001
4. Financial commitment
5. Greater social inclusion for people with mental health problems
6. End stigma, prejudice and discrimination