Health and Community Services
March 5, 2019

The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable John Haggie, Minister of Health and Community:

Minister Haggie Encourages Support for Stigma Awareness Week

Mr. Speaker, I rise in this Honourable House to recognize Stigma Awareness Week which began on Sunday, March 3, and will conclude on Saturday, March 9.

This annual initiative was established in 2016 by CHANNAL to bring attention to the negative impacts of stigma and discrimination on the lives of individuals and families living with mental health and addictions issues.

Stigma is a negative stereotype that often creates an invisible barrier preventing people from accessing crucial supports to help them recover.

CHANNAL is organizing several events throughout the province in recognition of the week. In St. John's, they are hosting a Wellness Wednesday event, as well as an Open House on Friday. Later this month, there will be a variety show – showcasing amazing talent from the community. It’s still not too late to participate, so I encourage people to go to the CHANNAL Facebook page for entry details.

There’s also going to be a variety show in Stephenville and mini wellness workshops in Grand Falls-Windsor.

Government is committed to addressing gaps in mental health and addictions through Towards Recovery: The Mental Health and Addictions Plan for Newfoundland and Labrador. One of the accomplishments worthy of noting is that the waitlists for counselling services have been reduced by 68 per cent.

Mr. Speaker, we take great pride in working with organizations such as CHANNAL to strengthen programs and services for those with mental health and addictions issues.

Thank you Mr. Speaker.

2019 03 05                              2:00 p.m.