People Before Profit Cllr Shaun Harkin said,
“We welcome the Health Minister’s announcement that he will provide £66,000 of further funding for the Community Crisis Intervention Service.
This announcement has come as a result of the people power campaign led by CCIS workers, mental health service users and advocates, concerned residents, trade unionists, students and many others.
Without the emergency campaign to save the service, Derry’s suicide prevention service would have been closed on June 15. The Stormont Executive up until now had ignored the demand from Derry to protect the service. Service users would have been abandoned. This would have sent a terrible message to the people of Derry and set an awful precedent at a time when many people are facing multiple challenges.
While we very much welcome the funding announcement, the campaign calls for long-term core funding. We cannot arrive back in a similar situation in another six months.
The Health Minister has indicated the CCIS could access the £10m Mental Health Support Fund. It’s vital that the momentum from this campaign and funding announcement is translated into securing the long-term future of the service.
There is a clear lesson that people power campaigning is absolutely crucial. It’s the only way we will be able to defend public services and win the changes communities deserve.”