Maman Poulet | Clucking away crookedly through media, politics and life

Talking about it

January 12th, 2011 · 1 Comment · Equality, Social Policy

Amnesty International and See Change are hosting a number of public events on the subject of ending discrimination and stigma in the area of mental health.

One of the current projects supported by both groups First Fortnight which takes place this Saturday in Dublin with a public debate on the subject of Have attitudes and behaviours towards people with mental health problems really changed? Those taking part will include novelist Colm Tobin, GAA Star Liam Hayes, Dr. Siobhan Barry, and Amnesty CEO Colm O’Gorman. Details on obtaining a free ticket to the event are available here.

This will be followed by a gig in the Button Factory later than night.

Much of the public discourse about mental health issues is not from people openly speaking of their experience of problems with their health. Politicians and policy makers argue constantly about funding and places in institutions, the media coverage is about the location of facilities or voyeuristic misinformed comment on criminal issues. There is little pride on the issue or celebration regarding recovery or supports available or acknowledgement that there is difference and that’s just the way things are meant to be. Opposition has gathered in local communities against the locating of community housing and drop in venues. Rights and entitlements for those who experience mental health difficulties are also frequently overlooked with emphasis on protection of everyone else. The medical model has ruled the discourse also. However despite all this there have been powerful examples of social movements growing of survivors, of Mad Pride, of self help.

The video below launched recently by Amnesty has no voiceover artists or actors or celebrities, just people talking about their experiences. More please.

(Find details of meetings organised by See Change (a national partnership of organisations committed to reducing stigma on mental health) around the country here.)


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