MUST READ: Guest Blog: Mike King – why Government Services are failing us on suicide



The Mental Health Foundations new CEO Shaun Robinson announced that in the wake of 579 deaths by suicide this year a National Review of Mental Health Services “would be a waste of time and resources”

I can tell you what the over 350 submissions to our People’s Review project is starting to tell us:

– More than 70% of people who have accessed mental health services in this country have had a negative experience

– Staff are overwhelmed and burnt out by a system that is overworked and under resourced

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– Suicidal New Zealanders are reporting wait times of up to 14 weeks to access the help they need.

– Suicidal New Zealanders being told that they aren’t “serious” enough to be seen, and are forced to make serious attempts on their lives to access services

– Multiple stories of frustrated, and sadly in some cases bereaved families, who have tried and tried to access services for their loved ones clearly in mental distress.
Here’s another fact you may not be aware of given you’ve only been in the job 5 minutes.

– Of the 428 men who died by suicide in 2014/2015 50% had accessed mental health services and chose to walk away in despair and take their own lives.

What does that tell you Shaun? It tells me that this is a service in crisis and one that needs reviewing.
Going by the other stupid comments you have made including “it’s fairly clear where the pressure points are within the response to the mental wellbeing of New Zealanders” (without producing a thread of evidence) the only waste of time and resources that I can see is the extravagant wage the Mental Health Foundation is paying you!


Mike King is one of NZs best informed voices on mental health and suicide


  1. Hi Mike,
    Yes this is a very good article, as the usual treatment for depression is Prozac or its many pseudo generic names and that toxic chemical cocktail usually indices Suicide tendencies

    Why don’t they just prescribe St Johns Wort or Camomile tea as calmative’s?????

    OH of course that stuff you can grow in your own back yard or back of your car in a pot.

  2. The shadow government or new world order or what ever you want to call double government is no longer a conspiracy theory because your vote dosnt mean jack with douche nozzles like this. You could vote to change mental health but this douche nozzle will say lol nope. Must protect current and future ministers not the public

  3. Some NGOs have more or less become the mouth piece of the government, as so many also depend on government funding support. I observed this in the process of “welfare reforms” under this government. Some still speak up and raise issues, but the ones are getting fewer by the week. Now the government wants all kinds of “data” on budget and advocacy service recipients from the service providers, or they will not get any funding. All supposedly to gather needed info to “ensure” the “investment approach” is working.

    Meanwhile the shit government has offered NADA in evaluation reports on for instance “mental health employment services”, I am repeating myself, it is a disgrace.

    They force others to do the work for them, for less and less, same as the health services are forced to do more with less, no wonder we have a crisis.

    Of course Mr Coleman commented today, we need no review of mental health services. So here we go, echo chamber for those in denial, I suppose.

    On welfare reform evaluation, which has hardly been done, as few if any reports have been made available:

    The government wants no review, as it will show how poorly it delivers and how appalling mental health care is in this country!

  4. Thanks for bringing this to our attention Mike. Those comments by Shaun are a disgrace. A responsible voice in mental health would be saying exactly the opposite. He’s basically saying “let’s not bring our mental health statistics to public awareness” – sounds crooked to me.

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