The provincial government is earmarking $53 million for mental health and addiction recovery support during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. The money will be used to implement more online, phone and in-person resources.
Premier Jason Kenney says people are struggling and the government is committed to ensuring Albertans have the support they need to cope and stay mentally healthy during these tough times.
“We know people are struggling right now, and we want Albertans to know that help is there for them through the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.”
He says the government’s mental health response is the largest in Canada, with funding greater than all other provinces combined and doubled.
Of those funds, $21.4 million will go improve access to phone and online supports with existing helplines, including the Addiction Helpline, the Mental Health Helpline, the Kids Help Phone and the Community and Social Services Helpline.
$25 million will create a new community grant program meant to better community mental health and addiction recovery for the public, including Indigenous communities, seniors, families, and people experiencing social barriers who are negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Kenney adds that the results of a recent survey show 87 per cent of Albertans feel their mental health has suffered because of the pandemic.
Written by Erica Fisher, MyGrandePrairieNow.com