2013 Headline Voice Media Award

Headline, the national media monitoring programme for mental health and suicide has selected The Irish Independent as the 2013 Headline Voice Media Award for its impressive quality and quantity of media coverage given to people with self-experience. The award was presented by Kathleen Lynch TD Minister of State, Department of Health and Department of Justice, Equality & Defence with responsibility for Disability, Older People, Equality & Mental Health.
The Headline voice media award which was awarded to the Irish Independent is a collaboration of Headline and See Change, the national mental health stigma reduction partnership to recognise the important role played by media in giving voice to people with experience of mental health problems.
Headline works with journalists and media organisations to ensure that mental health and suicide related issued are responsibly covered in the media.  Speaking on the awards, Jane Arigho, Media Project Coordinator at Headline said, “The media have a key role to play in how the public think about suicide and mental health problems.  The Irish Independent’s coverage of personal experience from journalists like Arlene Harris and Katie Byrne helps to remove the myths and stigma around mental health. The irish Independent is playing a fundamental part in raising awareness around suicide and self-harm and destigmatizing mental health problems.”
Claire Grady, Editor of the Irish Independent said
“We are pleased and honoured to receive the Headline Voice Media Award.  As a newspaper/media organisation, we owe it to our readers to openly discuss mental health and give a voice to those who may previously have not been heard. We spent a lot of time considering what kind of contribution we could make in our coverage of mental health in Ireland, and how we could use our national reach to develop something practical, effective and, ultimately, positive. We wanted to get people talking about their mental health in the same way that they talk about their physical health. We wanted to help our readers understand their minds and the various risk factors, warning signs and triggers that can lead to mental illness.   We feel that the best way to challenge stigma is to acknowledge that we are all vulnerable.  Personal accounts from people who have been there not only helps remove stigma – it gives readers the tools to help them overcome mental illness and safeguard their mental wellbeing, too.  We will continue to deliver mental health coverage that has personal experience at its core. And we will continue to provide a platform from which people can share those experiences.”