Support our call for mental health professionals in elementary schools
Sign our petition at the bottom of the page
To the Government of Alberta,
I am writing in support of the Calgary Alliance for the Common Good campaign to Turn the Tide of mental health in our schools. Our local schools are more than places of learning. Teachers and staff provide emotional and social support every day. They are the frontline workers in the early intervention of mental health issues. It is estimated that up to twenty per cent of children and youth in Canada experience mental illness, and that only one in five children and youth who need mental health services receives them. Health experts tell us that close to seventy-five per cent of cases of adult mental illnesses have their origin in childhood.
The COVID-19 pandemic has created an even greater need to address this issue. Schools will require full support when parents return their children to the classroom. By providing a full-time mental health professional for every elementary school, both staff and families will receive the vital support they need to nurture healthy and vibrant minds. By investing now, we can change this crisis into an opportunity to turn the tide on mental health in a generation.
I join the Calgary Alliance for the Common Good is asking you to support the following action:
That our government provide sustainable funding for a mental health professional in every elementary school to fulfill the following mandate:
- Ensure that every student has equal and timely access to assessments that will provide the right learning supports
- Coordinate holistic and community-oriented mental health strategies for the benefit of families, students and staff
- Oversee the successful training of all school staff in evidence-based mental health pedagogy and trauma-informed practice
As a citizen, I firmly believe that the early promotion and prevention of mental health issues will bring significant return on investment. In any given year, one in five people in Canada experiences a mental health problem or illness, with a cost to the economy of well in excess of $50 billion. In this critical time, we are looking to our government to show confident leadership by choosing forward-thinking strategies that will strengthen families and create sustainable and healthy government spending in the future.
On behalf of every young Albertan across this province, thank you making this happen.