The Tragedy of Mental Health on the Young


Hon. John McKay M.P.

Source :  Hon. John McKay M.P.

House of Commons
Members Statement
Mental Health Week
May 7, 2007

Hon. John McKay (Scarborough—Guildwood, Lib.): 

    Mr. Speaker, this is National Mental Health Week. Mental illness affects people of all ages, but the effect of this illness on the young is particularly tragic. It takes away their future. Mental illness affects not only the individual but the person's family. It is an issue that has affected our family.

    Hope and aspirations for one's child are devastated. The child may not graduate from university or college. It may be unrealistic to look forward to marriage and grandchildren. With the present state of research, the most one can hope for is that the medication will stabilize the individual. There is no cure.

    That is why Dr. John Roder's breakthrough research into schizophrenia at the Lunenberg Research Centre is so very important and welcome. He has switched his career track from well-funded cancer research to research on mental illness, the poor cousin in the world of medical research, as a result of his own son's diagnosis.

    More funds are urgently needed. I hope the Conservative government will make mental health research a priority.