Learn more about mental illness says local MPP

October 6 – 12 is Mental Illness Awareness Week, and Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker is encouraging Ontarians to learn more about what can be done to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness.

Mental illness is a significant issue in Ontario, across Canada and around the world. Every year, 2.5 million Ontarians experience a mental health or addictions challenge.

This week, the government was encouraging all Ontarians to have conversations about mental health, and the supports and resources that are available to those living with mental health challenges in our community.

“We can all make a difference in our own way and help those in our community who are facing mental health challenges,” said Walker. “Reach out to people who may be struggling, let them know they are not alone, and that support is available. Working together, we can break the stigma around mental illness, and provide better care for people facing mental health challenges.”

The government has made mental health a priority, including investing in more on the ground services across Ontario, including Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound. Earlier this year, the government announced a local investment of $1,235,505 to support people, families and caregivers living with mental health and addictions challenges.

Local agencies receiving funding included:

Grey Bruce Health Services – $1,020,000 for: Youth Residential Treatment and Withdrawal Management- $280,000, early psychosis intervention- $40,000, MHJ – Safebeds- $600,000 and MHJ – Addictions and Withdrawal Management for Safebeds- $100,000. Grey Bruce Health Services also received two additional beds for inpatient mental health needs.

CMHA Grey Bruce- $105,371 for: MHJ – Supportive Housing (LHIN-managed) – $54,820, MHJ – Supportive Housing (ministry-managed) – $22,300 and funding increase for the Rent Supplement Supportive Housing Program- $28,251

Keystone Child, Youth and Family Services- $110,134 for: child and youth mental health.

“This increased funding to our communities is part of our government’s investment of $174 million this year in addictions and mental health services,” said Walker. “We will continue to consult with local frontline care providers and listen to the people who are impacted the most – to ensure our local residents will have better access to appropriate care in our community, where and when they need it.”