SENEDD member Eluned Morgan has taken on an extra appointment with the Welsh Government in a role created as a result of the coronavirus pandemimc.
As the new Minister for Mental Health and Wellbeing, her responsibilities will include mental health services, dementia, substance misuse, veterans’ health, patient experience and Wales’ obesity strategy.
The changes reflect the need to respond to the impact of the pandemic on the mental health and wellbeing of the public in Wales.
Mid and West Wales regional member Eluned said: “I am delighted to be taking on this new role in addition to my work on the Welsh Language.
“Throughout the pandemic, I have been very aware of the impact the measures we have taken to curb the spread of the virus have had on the mood and wellbeing of the nation.
“The last seven months have been difficult for many of us. The national lockdown, and the threat of local lockdowns where the virus spikes, continues to take its toll on our mental health and our wellbeing.
“Lots of us have faced weeks and months of missed time with our loved ones. That has been really difficult and we have all had to adapt and cope with that separation in different ways.
“The first wave of the virus presented us as government with many immediate challenges. But we are mindful of the longer term impacts that this pandemic is now presenting. People have felt stressed as a result of fear of themselves or loved ones catching the virus, people also fear the impact of less money in their pockets and many fear for their children’s opportunities.
“I am pleased that the First Minister recognises the importance of mental health in Wales in taking this decision to give it more focus as a government level. I am determined to ensure that we end any stigma associated with this illness.”
In recent years, Eluned Morgan has focussed her regional work on raising awareness of mental health issues, launching the #IPledge2Talk campaign with a series of local, regional and online events to get people talking to combat anxiety and depression.