SOUTH Ayrshire is being urged to come together to talk about mental health at this year’s Time to Talk day on February 7.

See Me, the national programme to end mental health stigma and discrimination, have called on public bodies, private organisations and people across South Ayrshire to do more to ensure that people struggling with their mental health are treated fairly.

They have stressed that mental health needs to be a key focus for workplaces, education and health care in 2019, to stop people facing unfair discrimination. And they want this year’s Time to Talk day to be the starting point for everyone to talk about mental health.

See Me want people and organisations to hold Time to Talk events in local gyms, cafes, at coffee mornings, in dedicated areas in workplaces and schools or anywhere else where people can chat about how they’re feeling. The idea is to get everyone involved to show we all have mental health.

The most recent research into mental health shows that people aren’t willing to speak about how they are feeling, for fear of the reaction they will receive.

Last year’s Our Voice survey found that only 40% of people are willing to speak to their manager at work about their own mental health. As well as that 69% of people have witnessed others being treated differently or unfairly because of their mental health problems.

A survey of 1455 young people, carried out by See Me also found that only 26% would tell someone if they were finding it difficult to cope, and only 31% would tell someone if they had a diagnosed mental health condition.

Calum Irving, See Me director, said: “People with mental health problems face unacceptably high levels of stigma and discrimination.

“We all have mental health and any of us could go through a period where we struggle. In these times we need the help and support of those around us to give us the best chance of recovery.

“So we want to see workplaces, communities, schools, health providers in South Ayrshire to come together to talk about mental health this year, starting with Time to Talk day.”

You can get involved in Time to Talk day by ordering or downloading materials and support packs at