Independent candidate for Roscommon Galway Michael Fitzmaurice has said that “It has come to my attention that the Jigsaw Roscommon, which has been providing a free counselling service to young people in the 15-25 age-group is to close at the end of this month.”
“The service had been an excellent development for Roscommon because it provided confidential counselling in a comfortable and youth orientated environment. Jigsaw has premises in the Roscommon Primary Care Centre on the Circular Road.”
Michael Fitzmaurice went on to say: “For too long Roscommon has been left without funding to develop our Mental Health services at a time when they are so badly needed. If one speaks to anybody involved in Post-Primary education they will find that one of their greatest problems is dealing with students who have serious stresses and strains in their lives – there was never a greater need for a service such as Jigsaw and I can’t understand why the plug is now being pulled on this service and our most vulnerable people are being left without the support they are entitled to.”
Back in 2014, Emmett Corcoran, then an election candidate, warned that this service was in danger but was then assured by the HSE that the service was safe.
Michael Fitzmaurice said “Over the past three years 409 young people have accessed supports at Jigsaw Roscommon and this underlines the necessity for the service and the vital role the staff there were playing in the lives of our young people. In the last year alone, 96 young people have made contact with Jigsaw. This news has come as a shock to young people and their families as they had been expecting that six permanent positions were going to be filled plus a clinical coordinator. At a time when we should be thinking of providing outreach services around the county in places like Monksland, Castlerea and Ballaghadereen and instead of that the rug is being pulled from under those who need help”
“I am calling on Headstrong and the HSE to get their act together and put those services back in place so that our young people get the supports they need” concluded Michael Fitzmaurice.