Despite the Sask. Party’s repeated commitments to improve mental health services – and even though federal funding has been committed and a million-dollar private donation has been offered – the Sask. Party have announced they are refusing to move forward with plans for a mental health emergency unit in Saskatoon.
“The Sask. Party have talked a lot about improving mental health supports, but actions speak louder than words, and this decision to block progress on the mental health emergency unit speaks volumes,” said NDP Health Critic Danielle Chartier. “The Sask. Party’s own mental health report recommended this facility and now, instead of implementing this and the other recommendations, they’re dropping almost everything in the report.”
The Sask. Party’s callous cuts and refusal to provide the necessary funds to operate the unit are in stark contrast with the federal government’s commitment of nearly $158 million to help expand mental health services in Saskatchewan and a private donation of $1 million to make the emergency unit a reality.
The Sask. Party is further damaging the availability of proper mental health supports with cuts to Community-Based Organizations.
“Investing in mental health supports doesn’t just save lives – it takes the pressure off of our hospitals and emergency rooms and ultimately saves money too,” said Chartier. “Mental health care is already woefully underfunded in Saskatchewan. Now, as they scramble to cover up for their own mismanagement, scandal and waste, the Sask. Party are missing the opportunity to capitalise on private and federal funding and making things worse for some of the most vulnerable in our province.