Kenora (ON), Aug 6 (Canadian-Media): It was announced today by Todd Smith, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services, that Ontario is investing up to $5 million in funding for new and expanded Indigenous mental health and addictions services, including support for continued community-led responses to social crisis, media reports said.
Ontario is also planning to invest $3.8 billion over 10 years to develop and implement a comprehensive and connected mental health and addictions strategy.
This new funding will enable Indigenous communities around the province get needed care and services closer to home and support mental health training, development and support for frontline workers, including youth-focused outreach workers who provide culturally appropriate support.
“It’s important to be responsive to the diverse needs of Indigenous communities through programs and services that are designed by Indigenous peoples and delivered in a culturally appropriate way,” said Minister Smith. “I’m proud to be working with Indigenous partners to put these new supports in place to make sure help is there when people need it.”
This funding is part of the additional $174 million the government is providing this year to address critical gaps in services across Ontario and
Ontario will be making this additional funding available every year.
“Our government is making mental health and addictions services a priority and taking a cross-government approach to solving community mental health and addictions challenges,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “This additional funding for Indigenous communities will help support more culturally appropriate frontline services and address some of the critical gaps in the system. Investments like these are part of our long-term plan to build a modern and integrated public health care system that is focused on local needs, the patient experience and better-connected care.”
“These investments are part of our commitment to develop and implement a comprehensive and connected mental health and addictions strategy,” said Michael Tibollo, Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)