Mental Health & Addiction Update - 27 November 2020

on 30 November




 Toni Gutschlag Acting Deputy Director-General, Mental Health and Addiction

Toni Gutschlag
Acting Deputy Director-General, Mental Health and Addiction


Kia ora whānau

You might have seen a lot of commentary in the media last week that was triggered by a tweet from rugby stalwart Keith Quinn. He commented on the number of grown sportsmen that he had seen crying ‘tears of joy’ in recent weeks and called on them to “harden up”.

It’s fair to say that the public quickly pointed out that his comments were out of date and old fashioned. Well-known mental health advocate Sir John Kirwan reflected that things are quite different for newer generations, especially when it comes to mens’ mental health and wellbeing.

Our society in general has become much more aware of the importance of being mindful of our mental health and wellbeing, that it is ok to not be ok and that we should reach out for help if we need it.

These are the central messages that run through all the public wellbeing campaigns like Getting Through Together run by Mental Health Foundation and the team at All Right? as part of supporting the psychosocial recovery from COVID-19. It’s also the focus of the new campaign to support people who are experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19. There are some great messages and resources that your organisations can share with your teams and communities – find out more below.

You might remember a while ago we celebrated the launch of Te Reo Hāpai – a new online Māori language glossary related to the mental health, addiction and disability sectors. I used it to find this fitting whakatauki about the impact of what people say – or Tweet – that I wanted to share with you all. And each week, we’ll share a phrase or word that relates to our sector and I encourage you all to have a look and do the same.

He mana tō te kupu. Words have great power.

I hope you have a good week.

Ngā mihi nui



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