Within the last few days, here in Scotland, Dennis Roberston, a member of the Scottish Parliament gave an emotional and moving speech to raise awareness for eating disorders. Last year, the MSP’s daughter died at the age of 19 due to anorexia, and so this important issue is especially close to Roberston’s heart. Particularly pertinent as it is both Eating Disorder Awareness week, and the anniversary of his daughter’s death, Robertson called on the government to encourage GPs to be more aware of eating disorders, and to develop ways in which to diagnose and treat these mental health problems. He also promoted National UK-based charity Beat which tries to raise the profile of eating disorders and support victims, and their loved ones.
It is shocking how many young girls and boys suffer from anorexia. People forget that mental health problems have serious repercussions for the victims, and everyone surrounding them. Raising awareness is crucial, as the earlier these illness are caught and treated, the more chance the sufferer has to recover. Body acceptance is one of the most important lessons that a child can be taught, and we all have a responsibility to teach it.
This example – Dennis Roberston’s determination to prevent more teenage girls suffering from the same fate as his daughter – displays why I feel that Scotland should be an independent country. With full powers, access to our own resources, and the ability to make every decision ourselves, the Scottish Parliament will be better positioned to tackle the problems it sees as high-priority.
I’d have loved to post the video of Dennis Robertson speaking in the parliament, but unfortunately the BBC does not allow such things. Therefore, it can be found here – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-17125606.
I hope everyone can take the time to watch it, or even promote Eating Disorder Week in some way. This is such a crucial issue, and the more attention brought to it, the better.