Discrimination persists against persons with mental illness

Despite the Government’s best efforts to sensitize and educate residents about mental illness in the workplace, discrimination and stigma persist.

Speaking this morning at a service at the Mount of Praise Wesleyan Holiness Church to commemorate Mental Health Month, Minister of Health John Boyce said that persons frequently do not seek the treatment or support necessary in fear of losing their jobs.

“Adults often fear that disclosure of their mental illness will have negative consequences for their employment, their family and their participation generally in community life,” he said.

“We must ensure that persons with mental health conditions are not denied opportunities to contribute to social and economic life and their human rights are indeed protected,” he added.

Boyce said that the misconceptions towards mental illness continue to fuel the discrimination and mistreatment occurring in the workplace.

He revealed that in an effort to help patients receive treatment with their dignity intact, his ministry has integrated mental health services in the community, namely psychiatric outpatient sessions at the polyclinics.

“This makes it more convenient for those with mental health conditions to receive their treatment and also minimize the stigma and discrimination currently associated with institutional care,” he said.

Assistant Director of the Psychiatric Hospital, Heather Payne-Drakes, said the hospital is launching The Friends of the Psychiatric Hospital Charity, to not only raise funds for hospital equipment but to spread awareness that much like a physical ailment, mental illness needs to be addressed and treated.

“We still have some stigma and some discrimination but that is being eroded so we want to use this association to increase awareness and when people are aware of what is happening and what mental illness is and how it can be brought on, then they realize it is not different from having another illness, diabetes or a heart issue. It is just another medical problem that you need attention for,” she said.

7 Responses to Discrimination persists against persons with mental illness

  1. Sheron Inniss October 8, 2017 at 6:39 pm

    This is to be expected as some of the same people who are charged to care for you put your business out in the public domain.

    True true true

  2. Tony Webster October 8, 2017 at 9:02 pm

    Perception…is a natural, invaluable, and often also a pliable…human instinct. It is iundoubtedly related to “discrimination” , being also tied to the value of making personal choices. However, without a sense of perception, one could easily expose oneself, to many forms of danger, such as gullibly placing unsuited persons in positions of high office, or authority.

    Discrimination against persons with congenital physical handicaps, is a similar, but yet different, form of discrimination, but thankfully, we have made great strides and are much more accommodating, and appreciative, of such unfortunate folks.

  3. archy perch October 9, 2017 at 6:55 am

    How does one determine who has a mental illness???
    A man who gets on a political platform today and blast you and your party for everything under the sun, and then turns, like a weather cock, and joins the same party he has been blasting……with a big smile of glee in his eyes before its leader. Is that mental illness.And he calls himself a Reverend. SMH ! Jack,s Ass. HAHAHA!

    • Jennifer October 9, 2017 at 7:01 am

      That person is an Opportunistic SOB and a player.

  4. Jennifer October 9, 2017 at 6:58 am

    Discrimination/prejudice/intolerance, narrow-mindedness, unfairness, inequity, racism, one-sidedness etc will always occur when there is a lack of education/information.

    • Jennifer October 9, 2017 at 7:09 am

      These above idiocies can occur via distortion of truth also. Then what cements the hole thing is when people become all blase and BS like that about the effects on the effected.

  5. archy perch October 9, 2017 at 7:06 am

    He gine be washing she car and kissing up, like he was doing with Frundel.Where dah gine put he. Close to the garbage pail I assume. Ha Ha


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