Mental Health funding must be exempt from budget cuts – Ó Snodaigh
Speaking in the Dáil this afternoon Sinn Féin TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh said funding for mental health services should be retained at its current level next year.
Deputy Ó Snodaigh said it is unacceptable for the Government to claim to be protecting the vulnerable on the one hand while claiming that everything is on the table in their consideration of cuts on the other.
Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:
“The Government must recognise that it is not acceptable to claim to be interested in protecting the vulnerable on the one hand while stating on the other that everything is on the table in their consideration of cuts.
“There should be an acknowledgement that there are areas of public service provision that have been chronically under-funded for decades and which should be off the table from the outset such as for example mental health services where spending is now at its lowest level in modern history.
“More than half of all staff cut from the HSE in 2009 came from mental health services despite mental health representing just 9% of the HSE workforce, residential conditions in some centres are inhumane, 200 children were admitted to adult centres due to the dearth of appropriate facilities and people with intellectual disabilities are inappropriately placed in psychiatric institutions in large numbers.
“There is an urgent need for the Government to, at a minimum, hold funding for mental health at its current level next year.” ENDS