Ontario Expanding Mobile Crisis Services to Respond to Mental Health Emergencies

Published on November 18, 2020

Ontario is proud to be providing over $37 million to significantly expand access to mental health services across the justice system, including hiring more staff, expanding mobile crisis services and safe bed programs across the province, and supporting the creation of culturally safe programs in First Nations communities.

This funding is part of the government’s $176 million investment this year in the Roadmap to Wellness, a comprehensive plan to build a fully connected mental health and addictions system across the province and is a key component of Budget 2020: Ontario’s Action Plan.

As part of the $176 million, the province is investing in mental health services that will help support the brave women and men of Ontario’s law enforcement services and will lead to better supports for individuals with mental health and addictions issues and assist Ontario’s frontline heroes in handling mental health cases.

This funding includes:

  • Over $6.5 million for mobile crisis services;
  • $5 million for safe bed programs to support mobile crisis teams;
  • Over $14 million for supportive housing programs designated for justice involved individuals;
  • $2 million for addictions/withdrawal specialist to support safe beds;
  • $4 million for enhanced addictions programming within adult correctional institutions;
  • $2 million for mental health and addictions peer support for offenders under community supervision;
  • $2.25 million for a corrections peer support program; and
  • $1.1 million for mental health and addiction supports to vulnerable and marginalized persons as part of the Ministry of the Attorney General’s Justice Centres.

In addition, Ontario has provided funding toward building strong evidence-based research on post-traumatic stress disorder and occupational stress injury – two common mental health challenges affecting Ontario’s frontline heroes. These findings will help the government identify new tools and programs to support the mental health and well-being of police and other public safety personnel, as well as enhance offender programming within adult correctional institutions.

To enable Roadmap to Wellness, Ontario is investing $3.8 billion over 10 years to create new services and expand programs. This year’s $176 million increase builds on the $174 million the government invested last year in more funding for mental health and addictions programs, bringing new base investments across the sector since 2019-20 to a total of more than $350 million to help support Ontarians living with mental health or addictions challenges – especially during these unprecedented times.

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