Guidelines Launched

On Thursday, December 2nd, 2021 The Mental Health Commission and Mental Health Reform launched revised guidelines for mental health services and staff working with people from ethnic minority communities.

Titled ‘Ethnic Minorities and Mental Health’, the updated guidelines are designed to inform mental health services and staff on how best to provide care to individuals from ethnic minorities. The guidelines are the result of a public consultation process which gathered feedback from mental health service providers, service users and interested stakeholder groups. Feedback from the consultation has led to the production of shorter and more user-friendly guidelines suitable for mental health professionals, including frontline workers and managers.

Gary Kiernan, Director of Regulation at the Mental Health Commission, said: “It is the mission of the Mental Health Commission to regulate and engage across a broad spectrum of mental health services to promote the rights, health and wellbeing of people who access mental health services. We are also responsible for setting standards for high quality and good practices across services.

“The guidelines are intended to be instructive to mental health services at a strategic level and to provide practical advice to mental health professionals in their work. We believe that the guidance, such as communication and language support; staff training; ongoing evaluation; and fostering respect for diverse cultures, beliefs and values, will ensure that services have the right information and tools to competently support everyone who accesses services in a way that is culturally appropriate.”

Fiona Coyle, Mental Health Reform CEO said: “Mental Health Reform was delighted to partner with the Mental Health Commission on the revision of these guidelines. Our national mental health policy, Sharing the Vision, recommends the delivery of diverse and culturally competent mental health supports throughout all services.

“People from ethnic minority groups face a number of barriers in accessing mental health supports that adequately meet their needs. Through this partnership, we aim to highlight the need for investment in culturally-sensitive mental health services to improve the accessibility and quality of services for ethnic minority communities in Ireland.”

‘Ethnic Minorities and Mental Health, Revised guidelines for mental health services and staff on working with people from ethnic minority communities’ is available to read and download here.


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