SASKATOON — Saskatchewan NDP Leader Ryan Meili is promising to invest more than $10 million to improve access to mental health care for families if elected Oct. 26.
Meili also says the money would help create a strategy to combat the province’s opioid and crystal meth crisis.
He says everyone has the right to feel safe in their own communities, and the strain and pressure of the COVID-19 pandemic has made timely access to care more important than ever.
Meili made the campaign pledge in Saskatoon, where he says the average wait time to get a bed at the Dube Centre for mental health is more than 18 hours.
He says the number of youth hospitalized for mental health reasons has also doubled in the last decade, and that Saskatchewan has the second highest rate in the country.
Meili says the party would create dedicated mental-health emergency rooms in Saskatoon, Regina, Prince Albert and Moose Jaw, and it would legislate a suicide prevention strategy.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published October 8, 2020.
The Canadian Press