Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Mental Health Matters Act, which contains provisions that we’ve been working to advance for years that would allow the Department of Labor to levy fines for violations of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act. The bill also contains other important provisions to protect consumers’ parity rights. Our latest blog post discusses the importance of critical provisions in the legislation. Read it here.
In Other News:
Also last week, AB 988, the Miles Hall Lifeline and Suicide Prevention Act, was signed into law by California Governor Gavin Newsom, transforming the state’s response to behavioral health emergencies. Key elements of the bill include sustained funding for crisis centers and mobile response, as well as coordinated implementation and long-term planning.
The Kennedy Forum worked closely with Steinberg Institute, Los Angeles County, Contra Costa County, Mental Health America of California, NAMI California, the Miles Hall Foundation, and NAMI of Contra Costa County to enact the legislation. View our joint press release on the topic here. And read our recent blog post addressing the need for other states to follow suit.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), announced 10 winners of its first-ever behavioral health Recovery Innovation Challenge to identify innovations developed by peer-run or community-based organizations that advance recovery. Former U.S. Representative and our founder Patrick J. Kennedy served as a judge for the program. More here.