Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force Comments on 2019 Behavioral Health Division Budget Narrative to Milwaukee County Mental Health Board Finance Committee – June 28, 2018
Jeanne Lowry, MMHTF Co-chair
On behalf of the Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force (MMHTF), thank you for this opportunity to comment on the 2019 Behavioral Health Division Budget Narrative. The MMHTF includes over 40 community organizations and comprises service providers, individuals who live with a mental illness or substance use disorder, advocates, family members, and other stakeholders who work collaboratively to support improvements in mental health services and advance recovery.
We understand that this is a difficult budget and that as policymakers you are facing difficult choices. We are deeply concerned that revenues are decreasing, which will put at risk the capacity to maintain the commitment to expand community based services and supports to better meet the significant needs in our community for mental health services, and treatment for substance use disorders. In addition, we are concerned that the cost for inpatient services continues to increase, while capacity to provide inpatient services has diminished. We ask for your leadership in finding new options to increase revenue and to support the goal we all share – to support recovery, including access to quality treatment and a range of supports for Milwaukee County children, youth, and adults who live with a mental illness or substance use disorder.