CMHA Saskatchewan Media Release
November 1, 2016
The Canadian Mental Health Association (Saskatchewan Division) Inc. is saddened by these events. Our Association extends its deepest condolences to the communities, families and all others affected by these tragic and untimely deaths.
We are pleased about the recent announcement of the EOC (Emergency Operations Centre) in La Ronge.
(See article: HERE)
While emergency operations are appropriate after a crisis of this nature, we offer suggestions to assist with a very difficult and complex matter on a longer-term basis. These suggestions would be:
- Support and resources, designed in close cooperation between Federal, Provincial and Indian Band Leadership to provide improvements to the determinants of health and mental health of the communities. Those would include housing, employment, recreation, food supply, water supply and other key services which provide security and a sense of well-being to citizens of any community and which are critical to long-term success.
- Long-Term and culturally appropriate resources put in place should be, as much as possible, staffed and managed by local communities.
- Personnel with special training and expertise in dealing with the unique cultural issues, who can relate effectively to families and those requiring both formal and preventive mental wellness needs.
- Cooperation between the various Federal, Provincial, Health Regions, Band Councils, and communities to ensure resources can all work effectively together.
It is important to note that while money itself is not the complete answer to this problem, Canada spends approximately one-twentieth the amount Australia spends on new mental health investments, and one –twelfth the amount the United Kingdom spends on the same. Saskatchewan is tied for last place in the amount of the health budget spent on mental health.
There are no easy answers to this difficult issue but short-term, under-funded, crisis-oriented support, which is then removed until the next crisis comes along is clearly not going to solve this critical issue to save the lives of young people in the north.
Associate Executive Director
Canadian Mental Health Association (Saskatchewan Division) Inc.
2702-12th Avenue, Regina, SK
Phone (Regina): 306-525-5601 Ext 224
Toll Free from anywhere in Saskatchewan 1-800-461-5483
For a printable version of this Media Release, please click here: nov01-16-media-release