Beatrice Wishart has today called on the next Scottish Government to “put the recovery and mental health services first” after new figures revealed 373 self-harm incidents were reported in Shetland over the last five years.
Ms Wishart warned urgent action is needed to prevent a "mental health tidal wave" prompted by the pandemic.
Figures have also shown that 8910 self-harm incidents were reported across the North of Scotland. Figures also suggest a marked increase in self-harm incidents in Shetland since 2018.
Just last month, the National Association of Headteachers and the Royal Colleges of Emergency Medicine and GPs backed calls for primary school teachers to be given training to help spot the signs of pupils who may be hurting themselves.
SAMH, Scotland’s national mental health charity, explains “there are no fixed rules about why people self-harm.” The charity says that from some it can “be a way of dealing with something that is happening now or that happened in the past.”
Beatrice Wishart, Scottish Liberal Democrat candidate for Shetland, said:
“The uncertainty of the pandemic has left many people feeling anxious and isolated. Mental health has suffered as a result. Staff work incredibly hard to support those who need it, but too often the demand stretches well beyond the resources available. This often means small problems grow and crises can result.
“Urgent action is needed to prevent a mental health tidal wave prompted by the pandemic and these figures further illustrate that need.
“Scottish Liberal Democrats believe that not enough is being done to help those in need. The next Scottish Government must put the recovery and mental health services first. We secured additional funding at the last budget but much more is required.
"As we navigate out of this crisis we cannot go back to the days before the pandemic. We must transform our mental health services so people get the help they need when they need it.”