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Mental health service providers need greater funds to ensure safety

The agreement between North Suffolk Mental Health Association Inc. and the US Department of Labor (“Group home to better worker safety,” Metro, Aug. 14) reaffirms the urgent need for sufficient funding for mental health services.

In the two years since the tragic death of Stephanie Moulton, community-based mental health services, provided by nonprofit organizations such as North Suffolk and hundreds of other organizations across Massachusetts, have remained significantly underfunded.

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Without appropriate funding levels, providers will continue to struggle to provide quality services that promote recovery in an environment that is safe for both clients and staff.

A state Department of Mental Health task force, created in 2011 to review staff and client safety, recommended new operational and communications procedures as well as a substantial increase in state funding for services. New policies can help ensure that tragedies such as Moulton’s death are not repeated, but in order to fully and effectively implement these policies, more resources are needed.

Vic DiGravio

President and CEO

Association for

Behavioral Healthcare

Natick

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