Ontario Adding More Mental Health and Addictions Services for Indigenous Communities

KENORA – Ontario is increasing the availability of mental health supports by making specific investments for Indigenous communities. This new funding will help children and youth, adults, and families from Indigenous communities around the province get the care and services they need closer to home.

Today, Todd Smith, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services, announced 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. The investment will 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 support patients and families living with mental health and addictions challenges. To ensure mental health and addictions service providers have stable, long-term funding, the government 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.”

This funding will support approximately 20 organizations to expand their services for Indigenous communities, support the training of more than 700 frontline workers, and provide up to 90 full time jobs in Indigenous service delivery organizations.

“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. “With our partners, we will create a connected system of care to ensure every person is fully supported in their journey toward mental wellness.”

Quick Facts

  • The government will invest $3.8 billion over 10 years to develop and implement a comprehensive and connected mental health and addictions strategy.

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