Categories: Community, Education, Motions, Press


Published date : 08 May 2017


Mid Fife & Glenrothes MSP, Jenny Gilruth, is looking to raise awareness of the importance of good mental health for Mental Health Awareness Week 2017.

The Mid Fife & Glenrothes MSP is calling on all constituents to take care of their mental health, and to be aware of the often-invisible issues which can have a huge impact. The call follows today’s publication of the Surviving or Thriving? report from the Mental Health Foundation, which states that women, young people, workers on low incomes, and people living alone or in large households are more likely to experience mental health issues.

Commenting, Jenny Gilruth MSP said:

“Mental health issues are just as important as other health issues, and we need to be aware of and prepared to talk about these issues so that we can support more people.

“Mental health is often overlooked and under-discussed, and there is still a significant stigma around this issue that prevents people from getting the support they need. Many people are still unaware that the problems they may be experiencing are a health issue. Many people can still feel reluctant or afraid to speak about their experiences openly or seek the support that they need.

“I’d encourage all of my constituents to be aware of the need to take care of their mental health, and to help end the stigma around mental health problems by talking about these issues openly with their friends, family and colleagues.”

The Scottish Government has committed to a number of measures working to improve Scotland’s mental health, including appointing a dedicated Minister for Mental Health, Maureen Watt MSP. Scotland is now the first country in the UK to have set mental health waiting time targets.

The Scottish Government published its 10-year Mental Health Strategy for 2017 to 2027 earlier this year. £300million has been pledged for mental health treatment over the next five years, and the Scottish Government will be recruiting 800 new mental health staff for A&E departments, GP surgeries, police station custody suites and prisons.

In September last year, Jenny Gilruth MSP used her first Scottish Parliament Members’ Business debate to highlight the importance of mental health education in terms of closing the attainment gap and improving the lives of young people in Scotland. The debate followed the publication of the Our generation’s epidemic report in July 2016 from the Scottish Youth Parliament, which put the spotlight on young people’s mental health in Scotland.

In the debate, the Mid Fife & Glenrothes MSP stated: “It is imperative that schools get to grips with mental health education … Young people need to know what good mental health means.”

Jenny Gilruth MSP added:

“As a former teacher, I know first-hand the impact that mental health issues can have on young people, their education and their future opportunities. The exam season in particular can be a hugely challenging time with a significant impact caused by additional stress.

“We must do everything we can to make sure young people receive the support they need.”

Last week, the Mid Fife & Glenrothes MSP lodged a motion congratulating the Glenrothes-based Fife Employment Access Trust (FEAT) for being awarded a £5,000 Discovery Grant by the Santander Foundation, which will be used towards running mindfulness courses for people with mental health issues.



Pictured: Jenny Gilruth MSP with the Surviving or Thriving? Report from the Mental Health Foundation, published on Monday 8th May.

Mental Health Awareness Week 2017 will run from Monday 8th to Sunday 14th May.

The Scottish Government’s Mental Health Strategy: 2017 – 2027 can be viewed here:

Jenny Gilruth MSP lodged motion S5M-05462 (“Fife Employment Access Trust”) with on Thursday 4th May with the Scottish Parliament. The motion text reads:

“That the Parliament congratulates the Glenrothes-based Fife Employment Access Trust (FEAT) on being awarded a £5,000 Discovery Grant by the Santander Foundation, which will be used toward running mindfulness courses for people with mental health issues; understands that the foundation provides support to charities that help disadvantaged people; commends it on recognising the importance of FEAT’s works; applauds FEAT, and wishes it every success.”

For more information on the Mental Health Foundation in Scotland, please visit:

Full mental health statistical reports for Scotland can be read at:


Gavin Hugh

Researcher for Jenny Gilruth MSP


Phone: 01592 764815


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