UFC champion Israel Adesanya calls on Jacinda Ardern to make counsellors available at Covid facilities

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UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya has suggested Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern make counsellors or therapists available at managed isolation facilities in New Zealand.

Adesanya is currently going through the mandatory 14-day quarantine at an Auckland hotel. It’s the Kiwi star’s second stint in managed isolation since October and comes after he and two teammates were stranded in the US for more than a month after they were unable to get a travel voucher.

Adesanya tagged the Prime Minister in an Instagram post praising her handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, but noted that improved mental health support services would be a huge benefit to many people in managed isolation.

“Just an idea I had after yarning with some staff and some guests at these quarantine hotels. It’ll pay to have an assigned counsellor or therapist at each of these spots,” Adesanya wrote.

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“Some people don’t cope well with being locked away and only having an hour a day outside to catch some rays. Some people aren’t built like us and are feeling their health decline mentally. These places feel like a fancy prison, I’d know…this is my second lag lol.”

Adesanya travelled to Las Vegas with City Kickboxing teammates Brad Riddell and Carlos Ulberg for the latter’s fight on the Dana White Contender, where he secured a UFC contract.

Despite some initial frustration, the trio made the most of their extended stay training at the renowned Atos Jiu-Jitsu HQ in San Diego, while Adesanya appeared as an analyst for last month’s boxing bout between legends Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr.

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