College of Psychiatrists urges caution around use of language, diagnostic terms and medication references when canvassing and debating before the fast approaching Election Day
- February 3, 2020
The College of Psychiatrists urges election candidates and politicians to be cautious of the language and terms they use which can create hurt, further stigma and misinformation around mental illness, disorders and distress.
While the College welcomes references to developing Mental Health Services, mental health promotion and other proposals around mental health over the next five to six days of intense pre general election activity it asks that they (candidates) refrain from using stigmatising and inappropriate terms related to mental health and illness.
Future Oireachtas members and government decision makers using diagnostic terms inappropriately, incorrect references to life saving approved and regulated medications and generally stigmatising words traditionally used around people who have lived with extreme mental distress can be very damaging. At any point in time any person in Irish society is vulnerable to mental health distress and illness but stigma can hinder a person seeking the help and support they may need.