Promise of Increased Mental Health Funding in Ontario

CADDAC National Director

Premier Kathleen Wynne and the Toronto Star were sent this letter by CADDAC recently in response to the Liberal party's promise for increased mental health funding, in particular for children and youth.

Hon Kathleen Wynne

Leader, Liberal Party of Canada

Dear Premier Wynne,

Additional funding in Ontario for mental health is certainly needed and very welcome. Resources are few, wait times are long and physicians are charging over OHIP for assessments. However, parents of children and youth with the most prevalent childhood mental health disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and adults with ADHD are wondering if they are going to be left out again. ADHD is never mentioned during metal health awareness campaigns, in press releases by mental health hospitals, or by national and provincial commissions on mental health. ADHD is not being addressed by our government. There are no working committees on ADHD in Ontario although significant socioeconomic costs result when we do not diagnose and treat this disorder. Abundant research has shown less academic achievement and fewer years of education leading to lower paying jobs, more accidents, an increase in additional mental health disorders, more substance use and abuse, less employment and a greater need for social assistance, more involvement in the justice system and a two-fold risk of early death. When we link these costs with the fact that ADHD is one of the most treatable mental health disorders, that students with ADHD can go on to post-secondary education when supported and become successfully employed in the career of their choice, it makes no sense that we are not giving this mental health disorder more attention.

Heidi Bernhardt

President, Centre for ADHD Awareness Canada

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