Thursday 18 July 2019

Mental health and Travellers

On Thursday February 7th Sligo Traveller Support Group with the support of Healthy Ireland and the HSE are hosting a SafeTalk training event from 10am-1pm at the Riverside Hotel in Sligo town.

SafeTalk is a form of 'suicide alertness' that helps prepare participants to identify persons with thoughts of suicide and connect them to suicide first aid resources. Those who attend will learn how to provide practical help to persons who may be experiencing mental health difficulties and help reduce the risk of suicide in their communities.

The issue of mental health and suicide within the Traveller community is at a crisis point with suicide rates at least 7 times higher for Traveller men and 6 times higher for Traveller women. Jamie Murphy from the Sligo Traveller Support Group (STSG) talking about the reasoning behind the training said "Suicide and poor mental health in the Traveller community is something unfortunately we deal with on a regular basis.

There are a whole variety of reasons for this including homelessness, unsuitable accommodation, lack of educational supports, lack of employment opportunities and discrimination.

According to the ESRI Travellers are ten times more likely to face discrimination when seeking employment and 22 times more likely to be discriminated against in a private business such as a shop, bar or hotel.

Travellers are also over represented in the national homeless figures making up 10% of the people who are homeless but yet Travellers only represent 1% of the population. will try to accommodate them.

Contact Jamie on 0719145780 to book a place.

Sligo Champion