Ontario Investing in Mental Health to Improve Community Safety and Support Frontline Workers

Source: 
Government of Ontario


News Release

The Solicitor General was joined today at Toronto East Detention Centre by the Deputy Premier and the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, to highlight provincial investments in mental health services that will improve safety for the people of Ontario and better support frontline workers, including correctional officers.

The $18.3 million in new funding will support those affected by mental health and addictions challenges in the justice sector, including:

  • Direct support for corrections staff to address operational stress injuries and other mental health challenges
  • New mobile crisis teams that will help police officers and other first responders manage sensitive situations when assisting people with severe mental illness
  • De-escalation tools and training for police officers to better respond to interactions with people with mental health and addictions issues
  • Training for corrections staff to help manage stressful situations with inmates who have mental health and addictions issues.

Many frontline staff, including correctional staff and police officers, face mental health issues of their own. As they're increasingly called upon to work with others dealing with mental health and addictions problems, staff have reported increased stress and operational stress injuries, and asked for training to better manage their challenging jobs.

Quick Facts

  • Investing in mental health and addictions services is part of Ontario’s plan to create a modern, sustainable, and patient-centered public health care system.
  • The government will invest $3.8 billion over 10 years to develop and implement a comprehensive and connected mental health and addictions strategy.
  • The Ministry of the Solicitor General recently announced a comprehensive mental health program for Ontario Provincial Police personnel and their families.
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