On Monday, psychological well being advocates referred to as on Gov. Mills, the state legislature, and Maine’s congressional delegation to higher fund progressive remedy applications.
AUGUSTA, Maine — Yacia Provencher shared her frustration concerning the state of Maine’s psychological well being system with reporters at a information convention on the Maine State Home in Augusta on Monday. She mentioned she spent years attempting to get her ex-boyfriend, Justin Butterfield, assist along with his critical mind dysfunction (SBD) solely to be informed that he’s “not harmful sufficient.”
“I used to be informed they did not imagine he was experiencing psychosis,” Provencher mentioned, preventing again tears. “And everybody went on their approach, again to their properties and households of security.”
Butterfield, 34, of Poland was charged with the homicide of his brother, 38-year-old Gabriel Damour, on Nov. 24, and Provencher mentioned it might have been prevented.
Twelve years in the past, the progressive remedy program invoice was handed by the legislature. It was sponsored by former Sen. John Nutting and co-sponsored by former Sen. Peter Mills, the brother of present Gov. Janet Mills.
Nutting mentioned on Monday that though this system exists in Maine, there are too many limitations to really get somebody on a plan.
“There are nonetheless many medical professionals in Maine that do not know the legislation exists as a result of the division has not informed them and never promoted it,” Nutting added.
Simply within the final legislative session, a invoice was handed to determine a progressive remedy plan fund to pay for progressive remedy plans. However nonetheless, advocates mentioned this is not sufficient, and if individuals do not get the assistance they want, they are going to proceed to commit horrific crimes like homicide.
“When untreated, they’re 4 occasions extra prone to turn out to be violent. For instance, 29 % of all home homicides are perpetrated by somebody with an untreated SBD,” Jeanne Allen Gore with the Nationwide Shattering Silence Coalition mentioned.
Gore spent 13 years attempting to get her son on a progressive remedy plan. He was hospitalized 43 occasions earlier than she was profitable.
“My son is a good instance of the success we are able to have. He’s an achieved musician who lives independently in the neighborhood and is his niece’s and nephew’s favourite uncle,” Gore mentioned.
Advocates are calling on Gov. Mills, the state legislatures, and Maine’s congressional delegation to assist and higher fund progressive remedy applications to stop any extra crimes from taking place that happen when sicknesses, resembling an SBD, go untreated.
In a press release from the Maine Division of Well being and Human Companies, a spokesperson wrote the next in an e mail:
“Maine individuals dealing with psychological well being challenges ought to have entry to efficient, compassionate remedy within the applicable setting that respects their rights and wishes. Governor Mills has demonstrated her dedication to this objective by investing in behavioral well being in each one in all her budgets, following underfunding of the system through the prior eight years. In state fiscal years 2022 and 2023, the Division is investing an historic $230 million in behavioral well being to assist the workforce, capability, and resilience of psychological well being and substance use suppliers in addition to sustainable MaineCare charges into the longer term.
“This consists of $15 million to deal with quick wants exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, cut back utilization of hospital emergency departments for behavioral well being crises, meet elevated demand as a result of long-term psychological well being results of the pandemic, and stabilize and assist cut back wait lists for community-based companies. The Governor moreover directed that the $20 million included in her Maine Jobs & Restoration Plan to strengthen Maine’s healthcare workforce prioritize behavioral well being.”
For extra details about the brand new invoice handed to determine a progressive remedy plan fund to pay for progressive remedy plans, click on right here.
Extra NEWS CENTER Maine tales
For the newest breaking information, climate, and site visitors alerts, obtain the NEWS CENTER Maine cell app.