MINDUP’s Coordinator Prof Ella Arensman, (University College Cork, National Suicide Research Foundation) was interviewed recently for a Debating Europe piece, Do we take mental health seriously?.

Well, if I look back over the last 10-15 years, then, on a positive note, I certainly have observed improvements in terms of attention and emphasis from policymakers, funders, people working in healthcare and community-based settings, in terms of prioritising positive mental health, but also mental ill health, and particularly also funding of projects.

However, if we compare the whole area of mental health to physical health or other specific areas, I think we’re still lagging very much behind. And, even though we are talking here about Europe, a lot of people may not realise that Ireland was one of the last countries in Western Europe were suicidal behaviour was decriminalised, and that was only in 1993. So, we’re still facing many delays, too many blocking factors or barriers, so it’s very justified that there is finally more emphasis and priority on it…