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George and Nicola outside Paisley Abbey

SNP Government Seeks Views To Shape Loneliness Strategy

Paisleys MSP, George Adam is calling on constituents in Paisley to contribute to the Scottish Government’s new consultation looking at the causes of social isolation and loneliness and how they can be addressed.

The consultation will run until 30 April and will thereafter feed into a new national strategy, one of the first in the world, to tackle loneliness and isolation. A national strategy to combat loneliness was a key ask of the Jo Cox Commission, which welcomed this announcement.

Views are also being sought on how communities can build on the work of the Scottish Government, and lead on ensuring those at risk of becoming lonely or isolated have access to the right support networks.

Commenting, George said:

“It’s important that voices from across Paisley get involved in the Scottish Government’s consultation to help shape the new loneliness and isolation strategy, especially since each and every one of us has a role to play in reducing loneliness in Scotland.

“Dealing with loneliness and isolation can be incredibly difficult, and by reaching out to our neighbours or anyone we think may be at risk of becoming isolated or lonely – by taking them out, doing a good deed or simply having a chat – we can all have a hugely positive impact.

Young or old – loneliness doesn’t discriminate and it is linked to both poor physical and mental health, and can have wide-ranging consequences on so many aspects of our lives.

“The SNP Government will be the first country in the UK and one of the first in the world to develop a national strategy to address loneliness and isolation, but this strategy needs our communities and society to lead the way in ensuring those at risk of loneliness get the support they need. I would encourage as many people as possible in Paisley to have a say on this very important issue by contributing to the consultation.”

George asks Question on Mental Health

George outside PaisleyTown HallThe day before the launch of the Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival in Paisley Town Hall, George Adam, MSP for Paisley, asked the Scottish Governments Minister for Public Health, Michael Matheson, what research the government had conducted on whether there is a relationship between obesity and mental health. The Minister noted the importance of the link and outlined the steps taken by the government to address this issue in the new mental health strategy, published by the government in August.

Commenting, George said, “Today [27/9/12] I am attending the launch of the Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival. I thought it would be the right time to ask the question of the government, finding out what they are doing to promote a more active lifestyle amongst people with mental health conditions. I was pleased to hear that in the new mental health strategy, the government gave a commitment to work with the NHS boards and other partners to support a range of measures to help people with severe and enduring mental illness to improve their physical ability levels.

‘I am very happy to have the launch of the Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival in Paisley, as hopefully this festival, like it did last year, will get people who suffer from mental health issues out and about, attending many of the wonderful events, and in turn, getting more physical activity. Attending many of the events last year, I talked too many who suffered with mental health problems, and they were thrilled to have this festival, which allowed them to get out and see events specific to there issues.

‘With the Scottish Governments commitment to help improve the physical ability levels of people with metal health issues, and the Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival offering it own unique events, I truly hope we can help many to improve there physical health, while also having fun and gaining more confidence to become more active.

Click here for a link to the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival