On behalf of the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC), Louise Bradley, President and CEO, made the following statement.
This week marks five years since the MHCC released this country’s first-ever mental health strategy, Changing Directions, Changing Lives: The Mental Health Strategy for Canada (Strategy). The Strategy was born of widespread collaboration as people with lived experience of mental illness, their families, care providers, clinicians and researchers came together to contribute their unique knowledge.
Since the launch of the Strategy we’ve made tremendous strides together. The hard work of translating the Strategy’s recommendations into practice has been a joint effort for us all—governments, providers of mental health and related services, employers, people with lived experience and their families and more. Every province and territory now has a mental health strategy reinforcing the Strategy’s priorities and most recently the federal government pledged to invest billions in mental health through the Health Accord.
But we cannot rest on our laurels. Many of the Strategy’s 109 recommendations still need action. Too many people in Canada still cannot access the right combination of services, treatments and supports, when and where they need them. Simply doing more of the same with the new federal dollars will not eliminate waitlists. We need to spend more wisely, prioritizing investments in areas where the evidence clearly shows long term returns on the health and well-being of people in Canada.
At the Mental Health Commission of Canada, we believe a joint commitment to redouble efforts to bring the Strategy’s pages to life will lead to exponentially greater progress in the next half decade.
As Mental Health Week urges us to do, it is time to #GETLOUD for mental health and to remember that actions speak louder than words.”
ABOUT THE MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION OF CANADA
The Mental Health Commission of Canada is a catalyst for change. We are collaborating with hundreds of partners to change the attitudes of Canadians toward mental health problems and to improve services and support. Our goal is to help people who live with mental health problems and illnesses lead meaningful and productive lives. Together we create change. The Mental Health Commission of Canada is funded by Health Canada.
www.mentalhealthcommission.ca | strategy.mentalhealthcommission.ca
Hélène Côté, Senior Communications Advisor, Public Affairs
Mental Health Commission of Canada