Social Welfare Department provides emotional support to those affected by Plaza Hollywood incident

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5th June 2023 – (Hong Kong) Following the recent violent incident that occurred in Plaza Hollywood, Wong Tai Sin, the Social Welfare Department (SWD) organised an emotional support session today at the Fung Tak Estate Community Centre to provide counselling and assistance to those who are feeling distressed by the event.

A total of 30 individuals attended the session, where clinical psychologists of the SWD explained ways of coping with emotional disturbances and provided guidance to help the participants overcome possible psychological trauma triggered by the incident. The session included a group sharing where clinical psychologists encouraged the attendees to express their views and feelings on the incident. Counselling was also provided for participants who required further assistance, and social workers will follow up with those who require special attention.

The SWD urges members of the public who feel emotionally disturbed to seek professional assistance as soon as possible. The 24-hour hotline of the SWD at 2343 2255 provides telephone counselling, support, and referral services. Individuals in need may call the hotline for assistance. It is crucial to prioritise one’s emotional well-being and seek help when necessary.

Meanwhile, The Advisory Committee on Mental Health (Advisory Committee) will hold an urgent meeting on June 9th to discuss the tragic incident that occurred in Plaza Hollywood and make recommendations to the government on enhancing public mental health. The meeting was called following the Chief Executive’s announcement that the Health Bureau would convene an Advisory Committee meeting as soon as possible to explore ways to address mental health issues in Hong Kong in a more integral, safe, and comprehensive approach.

The Advisory Committee meeting will cover the service model of the Hospital Authority’s (HA) psychiatric services and relevant professions’ manpower, rehabilitation and support services for individuals in mental recovery in the community, mental health support for carers and specific groups in society, reducing public misunderstanding towards persons with mental health needs, and handling of videos and online information that involve violence or have widespread impact on public mental health.

The Health Bureau and the Advisory Committee are highly concerned about the incident and will continue to work closely with the HA and bureaux and departments including the Labour and Welfare Bureau, the Education Bureau, the Department of Health, the Social Welfare Department, as well as other stakeholders in the community to review and further enhance the mental health services in Hong Kong.

The Advisory Committee once again appealed to the public not to be unnecessarily fearful of persons with mental health needs, and to continue to support and encourage them to seek help. Established in December 2017, the Advisory Committee advises the Government on mental health policies, assisting the Government in formulating policies, strategies, and measures related to mental health with a view to enhancing mental health services in Hong Kong.