Friday 9 December 2016

New President will need to show action, not words, on suicide issue

With mental health now an election topic, it's time candidates made a commitment, writes Carol Hunt

Published 09/10/2011 | 05:00

BETTER MENTAL HEALTH: Dr Harry Barry, author and director of Aware, has made a number of suggestions for how the
incumbent president can improve the mental health of the nation. Photo: Tony Gavin
BETTER MENTAL HEALTH: Dr Harry Barry, author and director of Aware, has made a number of suggestions for how the incumbent president can improve the mental health of the nation. Photo: Tony Gavin

Have you got your presidential election bingo cards yet? There's only three more weeks left to shout "House" and collect your wondrous prize of a visit to the Aras. Phrases you can tick off as you listen to the candidates witter on include:

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"Special Olympics, "Nelson Mandela", "The Constitution" (Eh, the Irish one, says Dana International), "Vulnerable People", "I'm not a politician, but ... ", "The peace process" (to be collected in batches of five), "We need to move beyond party politics" plus "An Ireland of equals". And just in case you think these are all a bit too earnest and po-faced, there's also "I was only 'a volunteer member' of Fianna Fail", "I haven't shot anyone in years" and "Letters? What letters?"

There is one word, however, that has been repeatedly used by most of the candidates, competitively one could even say, which is not included in the irreverent bingo game. And that's "suicide".

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