Social Policy

Social Policy

MENTAL HEALTH
Position In Brief: 

The League of Women Voters of Rhode Island supports:

the right of an individual to obtain high quality, diverse, community-centered mental health services regardless of ability to pay
the right to care in the least restrictive environment necessary to the safety of the client
a community mental health system that provides for the administration of services in the geographic area of residence.
physical access to services via public transportation
treatment that occurs in the setting most appropriate to the individual clients needs and in the national language best understood by the client.
The league recognizes that the Institute of Mental Health can be an important link in this community mental health "chain" and should be recognized to that end. It further recommends that more alternatives for community-based care be developed.
Governmental Role In the Provision of MentalHealth Services

The league recommends that the:

Federal Government:

exert over-all control through the setting of standards and the enactment of enabling legislation.
guarantee a continuity of funds to facilitate long-range planning at the local level.
State Government: (legislative and departmental)
enunciate a definite up-to-date state plan community mental health including plans for implementing federal guidelines or the equitable distribution of federalfunds.
act as a liaison between the federal government and local centers.
equalize the availability and diversity of services throughout the state.
increase the funding ratio as the centers increase their services and assume responsibility previously dispensed by other state agencies.
increase state funding as or when federal funding diminishes.
evaluate the effectiveness of local centers.
a community mentalhealth system that provides for the administration of services in the geographic area of residence.
physical access to services via public transportation
treatment that occurs in the setting most appropriate to the individualclienrs needs and in the national language best understood by the client.
The league recognizes that the Institute of Mental Health can be an important link in this community mental health "chain" and should be recognized to that end. It further recommends that more alternatives for community-based care be developed.
Governmental Role In the Provision of MentalHealth Services

The league recommends that the:

Federal Government:

exert over-all control through the setting of standards and the enactment of enabling legislation.
guarantee a continuity of funds to facilitate long-range planning at the local level.
State Government: (legislative and departmental)
enunciate a definite up-to-date state plan community mental health including plans for implementing federal guidelines or the equitable distribution of federalfunds.
act as a liaison between the federal government and local centers.
equalize the availability and diversity of services throughout the state.
increase the funding ratio as the centers increase their services and assume responsibility previously dispensed by other state agencies.
increase state funding as or when federal funding diminishes.
evaluate the effectiveness of local centers.
institute an aggressive search for sources of third party payment of services.
Local Levels should:
actually implement a specific localplan under the generalstate plan.
continue to provide the "grass roots" support through funding public information and involvement in its centers.
seek alternative sources of funding such as grants from foundations.
seek payment from financially capable clients.
At the LWVUS convention in 2016 the delegates adopted by concurrence the following statement as part of the LWVUS position on healthcare: BEHAVIORAL HEALTH: The League of Women Voters supports:
Behavioral Health as the nationally accepted term that includes both mental illness and substance use disorder
Access for all people to affordable, quality in- and out-patient behavioral health care, including needed medications and supportive services
Behavioral Health care that is integrated with, and achieves parity with, physical health care
Early and affordable behavioral health diagnosis and treatment for children and youth from early childhood through adolescence
Early and appropriate diagnosis and treatment for children and adolescents that is family-focused and community-based
Access to safe and stable housing for people with behavioral health challenges, including those who are chronically homeless
Effective re-entry planning and follow-up for people released from both behavioral health hospitalization and the criminal justice system
Problem solving or specialty courts, including mental health and drug courts, in all judicial districts to provide needed treatment and avoid inappropriate entry into the criminal justice system
Health education from early childhood throughout life that integrates all aspects of social, emotional and physical health and wellness
Efforts to decrease the stigmatization of, and normalize, behavioral health problems and care
Statement of Position on Health Care, as Announced by National Board, April 1993 and supplemented by concurrence, June 2016.

The full position on healthcare is available on the LWVUS website.

Position History: 

Adopted 1975

League to which this content belongs: 
- Private group -