Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Mental Health, Colm Keaveney TD, has called on Minister Kathleen Lynch to reveal where the missing €15 million from the mental health budget has gone.
Deputy Keaveney has accused Minister Lynch of again betraying her promises on mental health.
He commented: “Twelve months ago, Minister Lynch swore that the €15 million taken from the mental health budget in 2014 would be restored in 2015. To cut the budget by 40% last year was a disgrace and reflected the Government’s complete lack of urgency in addressing the crisis.
“Yesterday, with more money in the public coffers to divert to services that have been neglected by this Government, the €15 million taken from mental health this year will seemingly not be returned. This extremely cynically move is a slap in the face to the hundreds of community care teams struggling to provide the most basic of mental health services.
“The Minister has again shown an inability to defend a mental health service budget that was meant to be ring-fenced every year. This is not good enough and Minister Lynch must be held to account for breaking yet another promise.
“Suicide is the greatest health crisis facing this country, securing an extra €15 million, that was cynically taken from the budget last year, should have been the absolute minimum Minister Lynch should have delivered.
“It is time for Minister Lynch to stand up and fight for mental health services across the country.”