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Govt Recognises Auckland Mental Health Crisis

Government Recognises Auckland Mental Health Crisis

The PSA welcomes the government’s recognition of the mental health crisis in Auckland with its announcement today of a review of Auckland mental health services by the Mental Health Commission, PSA national secretary Richard Wagstaff said today.

“Our members in the mental health area in Auckland have been steadfast in their attempts to draw attention to the staffing and accommodation shortages and the review is a positive step by the government towards addressing these serious issues.”

“Our members are concerned, however, that while medium and long-term solutions to the crisis are important, they are still dealing with the immediate problems.”

“The PSA is conscious that there have been previous reviews on mental health and now we would like not just words but actions. The fact remains that Auckland is still proportionately seriously under-resourced when it comes to mental health.”

Richard Wagstaff said short-term alleviation of the overcrowding in Auckland’s mental health units was critical and that members working in the units who recently took action will continue to do so in their efforts to ensure a safe environment for patients and for themselves.

“Our members did not decide to take action lightly. They consider it is imperative they continue their present action of not working while patient and staff numbers are at an unsafe level until they see a commitment to resolving their immediate concerns.”

Richard Wagstaff said the PSA would be meeting this week with the Mental Health Commission to discuss how it can contribute to the review.

[ends]

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