On Tuesday, February 7th, the Maine legislature issued a proclamation declaring Friday, February 10, 2023, as Community Mental Health/Substance Use Awareness Day. It was expected that the majority from both parties of the House and Senate would support this first-ever focus on mental health/substance use disorder.
Every sitting legislator was invited to visit one of six statewide locations to interact with people on the front lines including consumers, family members, direct care workers, law enforcement, and health care administrators.
On February 10th, several Maine legislators met at Kennebec Behavioral Health’s 66 Stone Street location to begin the legislative tour day. The morning began with an overview of services and the need for behavioral health care. Carla Stockdale, KBH’s clinical director, and Tom McAdam, KBH’s CEO, gave statistics and in general, spoke about the need for support from legislature.
Throughout the day, the group visited multiple locations to meet community members who are in the behavioral health world. Visits were made to KBH’s young adult PNMI, LINC Wellness & Recovery Center with Motivational Services, MaineGeneral and Capitol Clubhouse.
The day ended back at KBH where Crisis & Counseling spoke about their work and two police chiefs in the area expanded on the collaboration between law enforcement and behavioral health professionals to more effectively respond to crises and meet the needs of the communities they serve.