Justice and Public Safety
October 28, 2016

Focused on Rehabilitation

New Training Helps Improve Mental Health Outcomes for Inmates

Earlier this fall, 12 inmates at Her Majesty's Penitentiary (HMP) in St. John's received training in Mental Health First Aid, a two-day program offered in conjunction with the Mental Health Commission of Canada. Today, the Honourable Andrew Parsons, Minister of Justice and Public Safety and Attorney General, presented the individuals with their certificates of completion at a ceremony at HMP.

"I was honoured to have the opportunity to present the certificates for Mental Health First Aid and I commend these 12 individuals for completing this important program. They are now trained to be first responders on their respective units to a person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. It is critical that we have conversations and take steps to help address mental health issues within the justice system at every opportunity. We must continue to make improvements within our correctional facilities related to their treatment."
- The Honourable Andrew Parsons, Minister of Justice and Public Safety and Attorney General

Mental Health First Aid, offered by the Mental Health Commission of Canada, is designed to provide the skills and knowledge to help people better manage potential or developing mental health problems for themselves or others such as a friend or colleague. Examples of groups that have taken the training include health service providers, emergency workers, and families affected by mental health problems.

In addition to the Mental Health First Aid training for inmates offered at HMP, various mental health and addictions services are available at all adult correctional facilities.

QUICK FACTS

  • Twelve inmates at HMP in St. John's recently completed the Mental Health First Aid training. Minister Parsons presented certificates of completion to the individuals at a ceremony at HMP today.
  • The 12 individuals are now trained to be first responders on their respective units to a person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis.
  • The training was offered in conjunction with the Mental Health Commission of Canada.
  • Mental Health First Aid is designed to provide the skills and knowledge to help people better manager potential or developing mental health problems in themselves or others.

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Andrew Parsons, Minister of Justice and Public Safety, joins Heather Yetman, Manager of Institutional Programs, Adult Custody, and Cindy Whitten-Nagle, Classification Officer, for presentation of certificates of completion of the Mental Health First Aid Program at Her Majesty's Penitentiary

Andrew Parsons, Minister of Justice and Public Safety, speaks to inmates of Her Majesty's Penitentiary who recently completed the Mental Health First Aid Program

Media contact:

Jacquelyn Howard
Director of Communications
Department of Justice and Public Safety
709-729-6985, 689-2624
jacquelynhoward@gov.nl.ca

2016 10 28            10:55 a.m.