National’s Matt Doocey: Government is lacking as Mental Health call-outs increase

National’s Matt Doocey: Government is lacking as Mental Health call-outs increase

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National has called the government out for not doing enough regarding mental health call-outs.

This year alone has revealed almost 60,000 police call-outs were related to mental health compared to 2017, where police only received 46,000 calls.

Mental Health spokesperson Matt Doocey for National, says: “That’s a staggering increase of about 30 per cent since the Police were forced to axe the Mental Health Co-response proposal as the Labour Government reallocated its funding.” — “The groundbreaking new service was proposed to begin in Auckland, Christchurch and Palmerston North,” he added.

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“In 2017 police secured $8 million from the National Government to trial a new service which would see a mental health worker attend all crisis calls with police and ambulance staff.”

The defined proposal was meant for the pilot to operate in three different centres, every day of the week, ten hours a day. By September of 2017, it was expected to be up and running.

“It is disgraceful that this year out of desperation the Wellington Police, with Wellington Free Ambulance and Coast and Capital DHB launched their own mental health co-response pilot out of their own stretched budgets and not from any new Government funding,” said Matt Doocey.

National says the Government needs to stop wasting time and expand the scheme as much as possible to make a real difference for New Zealanders.

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