Mental Health Services

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 19th December 2018.

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Photo of Monica Lennon Monica Lennon Labour

I thank the minister for her statement. Scottish Labour welcomes the additional investments in mental health services and a commitment to raising the bar further. We share the same ambition for Scotland to have world-class mental health services.

It was a chilling moment when the Scottish Youth Parliament published its 2016 report “Our generation’s epidemic: Young people’s awareness and experience of mental health information, support, and services”. I am proud that fighting for access to school-based counselling has been a Labour priority in recent years, and I am grateful that the Government is committed to delivering it.

However, it is not just in children and young people’s services that real change is needed, and today I pay tribute to campaigners such as Gillian Murray and Karen McKeown, who have lost loved ones to suicide. It is because of people like them, who have kept pressure on people like me and on this Parliament, that real action is being taken.

We have to keep listening to people like them and go further still. Gillian Murray says that there are problems not just in Tayside, but all over Scotland. That is why she is calling for a national inquiry. Karen McKeown says that she wants not sympathy but action, and she still wants answers. If we look at Dame Denise Coia—