Local elections

Appeal not to turn mental health services in Tipperary into 'political football'

FG candidate calls for calm around location of Jigsaw facility

Tipperary Star reporter

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Appeal not to turn mental health services in Tipperary into 'political football'

Fine Gael local election candidate Conor Delaney, with Joe Parlon, talk on mental health in rural communities organised by Arrabawnleft, at the

Local elections candidates have been warned not to make a “political football” out of mental health services in Tipperary.

The appeal came from Conor Delaney, a FG candidate in Nenagh, following comments made by some sitting councillors that the service should be located in Clonmel.

Welcoming the news that the national organisation Jigsaw had been designated by the Government as service provider for Tipperary, he warned other election candidates about raising expectations about the location of the service by claiming it for their areas in the run up to the elections.

“We need to stop this serious issue being treated like a political football. The important thing is that the service is coming to Tipperary. Ever since St Michael’s closed in 2012 the mental health issues of people from Tipperary have been exported to Ennis and Kilkenny and it’s about time we starting caring for our own people in our own county,” he said. "Wherever it is to be located, it must be accessible for every young person, and, in a county the size of Tipperary, that will be challenging.”

The former Nenagh Town Council member welcomed news that the Government was in the process of establishing a permanent Oireachtas Mental Health Committee that will ensure cross-party representation on an issue that, he said, had been ignored and swept under the carpet in Ireland for far too long.