Statement from Dawson Trail MLA Bob Lagassé on NDP Rebuff of Men’s Mental Health Awareness Week Act

WINNIPEG — Dawson Trail MLA Bob Lagassé released the following statement today on the Manitoba NDP’s rejection of Bill 217 to commemorate Men’s Mental Health Awareness Week:

“It is extremely disappointing that the NDP government caucus decided today to play politics with Bill 217, the Men’s Mental Health Awareness Week Act, by refusing to allow the commemoration of a week with which to raise an important issue facing Manitobans.

“The private member’s bill that I introduced on Wednesday would have marked the week in June leading up to Father’s Day every year as ‘Men’s Mental Health Awareness Week’ in Manitoba.

“Like all Canadians, Manitobans need authentic conversations to recognize the mental health struggles increasingly faced by men. An awareness week would bring much more attention to workplace stress, relationship difficulties, and various other life challenges that affect men’s mental wellness. Across Canada, men account for close to 75 per cent of deaths by suicide, which is the second-leading cause of death among men under the age of 50.

“This growing concern has been recognized with commemorations in several other jurisdictions. The federal government marks June as Men’s Mental Health Month, while Alberta, Ontario, and Nova Scotia have partnered with branches of the Canadian Mental Health Association to bring attention to it.

“Today, the Manitoba Legislative Assembly could have taken a step toward a similar commemoration in our province. However, the Manitoba NDP chose not to support the Progressive Conservative caucus in the establishment of an annual week to draw attention to the importance of men’s mental health.”


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