CUPE Saskatchewan calling for action on mental health and addictions

The provincial government is being called on by CUPE Saskatchewan to address the mental health and addictions situation in the province.

This comes after Fort San council voted against moving Pine Lodge Treatment Centre to the resort village after their facility burned down on Christmas Eve of last year.

While Pine Lodge could return to Indian Head this summer, CUPE President Judy Henley says something needs to be done now.

“The backlog is building every day because we’ve lost this facility, but the backlog was there for years,” Henley said. “It takes a while for people to admit they have an addiction problem, when they finally admit it they’re at the point of wanting to get help, but if they don’t get the help when the time is there, they may relapse.”

Henley says after the pandemic, she would like to see the beds being used for COVID-19 patient care be used for mental health treatment.

“Addictions is part of mental health, and mental health had been on the backburner, for many years it has been neglected,” Henley said. “Mental health is on the rise as we have seen through the media and what’s happening across the country, so it’s going to be a win-win for the people of this province.”

There are 14 unionized workers currently laid off due to Pine Lodge being closed.

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