'Take up the challenge and help us save lives'
Published 20/02/2016 | 00:00
TO all the politicians and their supporters who are and will be canvassing in the Gorey area: I, as you may know, speak out about the issue of suicide and mental health.
I use whatever opportunity I can get to speak to people about what it's like to lose someone, a loved one, by suicide.
I am not addressing or slagging any party or politician. I want to address all of you equally. I also don't want this letter to be used by anyone else for the purpose of slagging a party or politician.
I invite you (local politicians) to offer to me (a voter), a summary of what you will do if elected to reduce the number of suicides in Wexford and what you and your party will do to improve the services available to help those suffering from mental health issue.
I don't protest, I don't march, I don't canvas for a political party. To those who do, I have no objection. But for me it's via constructive conversation.
So I am writing this for that reason and giving each of you the opportunity to let me, a voter, know your position and plans on this issue.
Each of you will no doubt shake many a hand over the next few days. The last time I shook my son's hand was the 26th of November, 2010, the day of his funeral.
Likewise, as you go about kissing babies, he is my baby, and the last time I kissed him, was that day... like the 3,000+ families (since 2010) around Ireland that have lost a loved one.
We want to help. Gorey is blessed to have a charity like Talk to Tom in town, born out of tragedy like in many other towns, villages, and communities. I also support The Cycle against Suicide to raise awareness. We have many others nationwide, most born out of tragedy.
You - various governments - have reduced the number of deaths on our roads, you have reduced the number of situations for second-hand smoking which will save lives. Now take up the challenge and help our communities save lives by breaking the cycle of suicide in Ireland. #togetherwecan .
I look forward to your communications.