March 3, 2020
Statement from Ontario’s Child and Youth Mental Health Lead Agency Consortium Following the Release of the Ontario Ministry of Health’s Roadmap to Wellness
The 31 members of Ontario’s Child and Youth Mental Health Lead Agency Consortium (LAC) acknowledge the Ontario Ministry of Health’s effort to begin the process of redesigning Ontario’s mental health and addictions system with the release today of Roadmap to Wellness: A Plan to Build Ontario’s Mental Health and Addictions System.
Following a careful review of the strategy, LAC members are concerned that Roadmap to Wellness contains little to nothing new for children’s mental health nor does the strategy propose the level of additional funding investment needed to meaningfully enhance the delivery of improved services for children and youth living with mental illnesses and addictions. Further, LAC members believe that implementing the measures proposed in Roadmap to Wellness will not result in creating equitable and immediate access to mental health and addiction services.
Lead Agencies have urged the Ontario government for new funding to support a comprehensive strategy for Ontarian children and youth and their families in need of mental health and addiction services and supports. Given the imminent tabling of the 2020 Ontario budget, the LAC calls upon the Ontario government to uphold its election commitment to invest in new, annualized funding for mental health and addiction services, particularly in the areas of reduced wait times and the expansion of overall supports and services for children and youth, including the care and treatment made available to Indigenous and Franco-Ontarians children and youth.
The Lead Agency Consortium is committed to the goal of continually improving child and youth mental health and addiction services in Ontario so that children and youth and their families receive the right services for their unique needs at the right time and in the right place. Lead Agencies have both the capacity and the expertise to act quickly and effectively so that new funding investments will deliver a system of high quality, timely, evidence-based, cost-effective child and youth mental health and addiction services that are locally-responsive and client centered.
To read the press release from the Ministry of Health, click here: https://news.ontario.ca/mohltc/en/2020/03/ontario-unveils-plan-to-build-mental-health-and-addictions-system.html