Washington, D.C. – Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, a cosponsor of the Mental Health Reform Act signed into law in 2016, called for robust funding to fully implement the law and help make America’s mental health system more responsive to the needs of those with mental illness.
“In December 2016, Congress made mental health and substance use disorders an important, bipartisan issue by passing this significant legislation into law,” the senators wrote. “We must follow through by funding these programs to truly address the long-standing challenges in our mental health system and enact the change that was outlined in the Mental Health Reform Act.”
In a letter to Chairman Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies, the group of senators highlighted that approximately 44 million Americans experience a mental illness in a given year, yet many struggle to access care or treatment. The Mental Health Reform Act, if fully funded, would strengthen enforcement of mental health parity laws, promote integrated mental health and physical health, and establish new programs to assist those with, or at risk for, mental illness. A fact sheet on the bill is available HERE.
The full text of the letter is available HERE.