Lam Thye: Govt should mobilise counsellors to assist those with mental health issues

Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye. -filepic

KUALA LUMPUR: The government should mobilise professional counsellors nationwide to give much needed counselling to those suffering from poor mental health, says Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye.

The Alliance for Safe Community chairman said the number of suicide cases since last year is alarming, thus the government should make mental health a priority.

"I believe the government has not done enough on this matter.

"I suggest that all counsellors are deployed, so that they will be able to give counselling to those severely affected during these challenging times, resulting in poor mental health," he told The Star on Thursday (Jan 14).

The counsellors could assist those suffering from poor mental health by giving advice and guidance to overcome stress during such a difficult period, he added.

"I fear that if this is not done, there will be more suicide cases," he said.

Lee said he also asked Befrienders in Kuala Lumpur to provide service to all those on the verge of suicide.

"Befrienders KL is offering 24 hours service to help those in need.

"As such, I feel the government should step up and mobilise all professional counsellors as well," he said.

On another matter, given the start of the movement control order on Wednesday (Jan 13), Lee also called on the government to provide more cash aid to small businesses and traders.

"Small time traders such as the pakcik or makcik selling 'kuih' will surely feel the effects of the MCO.

"Such businesses are mostly those from the B40 and M40 groups.

"The government has announced Bantuan Prihation Nasional (BPN) 2.0, which allocates RM2.38bil to 11.06 million eligible recipients.

"I feel more should be done to aid such businesses," he added.

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