We commend the Government’s Budget 2022 investment in specialist mental health and addiction, particularly the investment in community-based crisis services, specialist child and adolescent mental health and addiction services, and Kaupapa Māori services. 

"We see this latest announcement as a move in the right direction towards addressing issues raised in our recent Te Huringa report and transforming the system toward the vision of He Ara Oranga. The focus of this investment is aligned with the voices of Māori and tāngata whaiora (people with lived experience of distress and addiction, substance, or gambling harm) as heard through He Ara Oranga," says Commission Board Chair Hayden Wano. 

The Commission’s recent Te Huringa: Change and Transformation. Mental Health Service and Addiction Service Monitoring Report highlighted the need for more to be invested in addressing pressures on specialist services, particularly for young people. 

In its report the Commission emphasised the importance of continuing investment in youth services as well as in kaupapa Māori services, peer services, and other community-based specialist services. 

"However, with $1.8 billion currently being spent annually on mental health and addiction services and the system still under extreme pressure, more is needed. 

"We believe more funding is required to achieve equity for Māori, and improve youth services, specialist services, and other areas not addressed in the Budget. This will be particularly important given the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

"Overall, it is encouraging to see the Government continuing to follow through on the outcomes of the He Ara Oranga report and honouring its commitment to better services and support for mental wellbeing." 

ENDS

For further information, contact:

Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission

media@mhwc.govt.nz or 021 613 723

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