The deplorable decision to merge the male and female wards at Knockbracken psychiatric unit in Belfast is yet another example of cost-cutting at the expense of the most vulnerable - the patients. And there is surely no one more vulnerable than the mentally-ill.
Do our politicians (apart from Dawn Purvis, who has my full support) ever stop and think about the long-term effects of such actions?
It has got to be one of the most insensitive moves I have ever heard of - the limp excuse for the change being 'normalisation'. If they had any awareness at all, they would know there is nothing normal about mental illness.
There has been much hand-wringing about the increase in suicides in recent years. Ill-thought-out policies such as this are not likely to bring that number down any time soon.