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Heartbreaking parents’ stories prove failure by government on mental health – Buckley

29 June, 2017 - by Pat Buckley TD

Sinn Féin deputy Mental Health spokesperson Pat Buckley TD has condemned the government for their failure to address major failing in the youth mental health services. He made his comments following a day of consultation in the Seanad which heard a series of testimonies from families affected by mental health.

Deputy Buckley said:

“I've spoken with families up and down the country over the last year in this role and it never gets easier to listen to these heart breaking stories. These loving parents, who have shown such bravery and strength today, are at their wits end trying to find the care their children need. We heard from mothers over the day who have done everything they can but at every step they have been failed by the services.

“Despite this terrible experience, they came together today with constructive, informed and clear points for how we must change. They spoke of the hard work of professional who are over worked and under resourced. They spoke of the lack of counselling services and CAMHS which could have avoided hospitalisation. They told us of how their child had to be placed in an adult ward which they described as the worst experience of their lives which only exacerbated their mental health problem.

“These are not isolated stories but the reality for many, many people. All you have to do to establish this is look at the fact that over 2500 children are waiting for their initial mental health assessment. One parent spoke of how their son had to wait a further 6 months for their second appointment.

“The government must listen to these parents, to their stories and to their suggestions. They have been failed too long.” 

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