Budget 2022 –Analysis by Ron McKinnon, MP - What is in Budget 2022 for Mental Health?
April 22, 2022
What is in Budget 2022 for Mental Health?
Supporting Mental Well-Being With the Wellness Together Canada Portal
Since April 2020, more than two million people across Canada have accessed free information and support through the Wellness Together Canada portal. Children and young people make up almost 50 percent of users, and 42 percent of texting users have identified themselves as LGBTQ2.
- Budget 2022 proposes to provide $140 million over two years, starting in 2022-23, for the Wellness Together Canada portal to continue providing Canadians with tools and services to support their mental health and well-being.
Distinctions-based Mental Health and Wellness
Addressing the unique and deeply rooted traumas of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities—intergenerational trauma, overt and systemic racism and discrimination; and social and economic inequality— requires a distinctions-based approach to mental health and wellness is developed and delivered by Indigenous peoples.
- Budget 2022 proposes to provide $227.6 million over two years, starting in 2022-23, to maintain trauma-informed, culturally appropriate, Indigenous-led services to improve mental wellness and support efforts initiated through Budget 2021 to co-develop distinctions-based mental health and wellness strategies.
Speeding Up Housing Construction and Repairs for Vulnerable Canadians
- Over the last five years, the National Housing Co-Investment Fund has supported the construction and repair of 108,000 housing units for the most vulnerable Canadians.
- Budget 2022 proposes to advance $2.9 billion in funding, on a cash basis, under the National Housing Co-Investment Fund so that all remaining funds will be spent by 2025-26, accelerating the creation of up to 4,300 new units and the repair of up to 17,800 units for the Canadians who need them most.
A New Generation of Co-Operative Housing Development
For generations, co-ops have offered quality, affordable housing to Canadians while empowering their members through inclusion, personal development, and tenure security through their community-oriented housing model.
- Budget 2022 proposes to reallocate $500 million of funding on a cash basis from the National Housing Co-Investment Fund to launch a new Co-operative Housing Development Program to expand co-op housing in Canada. This new program will be co-designed with the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada and the co-operative housing sector.
Rapidly Building New Affordable Housing
Additional affordable housing units are urgently needed, particularly for those experiencing or at risk of homelessness.
- To ensure that more affordable housing can be built quickly, Budget 2022 proposes to provide $1.5 billion over two years, starting in 2022-23, to extend the Rapid Housing Initiative. This new funding is expected to create at least 6,000 new affordable housing units, with at least 25 percent of funding for women-focused housing projects.
Addressing the Opioid Crisis
An increase in opioid-related overdoses and deaths have devastated communities across Canada. Tragically, many jurisdictions reported a record number of opioid-related deaths in 2021.
- Budget 2022 proposes to provide $100 million over three years, starting in 2022-23, for the Substance Use and Addictions Program to support harm reduction, treatment, and prevention at the community level.
- This builds on the $116 million provided in Budget 2021 and $66 million in the 2020 Fall Economic Statement for the Substance Use and Addictions Program.
Long-Term Supports to End Homelessness
Through Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy, the federal government has committed more than $3 billion to address homelessness, including doubling annual funding for four years in response to the pandemic.
- Budget 2022 proposes to provide $562.2 million over two years, beginning in 2024-25, to continue providing doubled annual funding for Reaching Home, to provide longer-term certainty for the organizations doing vitally important work across the country and ensure that our communities have the support they need to continue to prevent and address homelessness.
To read the Budget 2022 speech or to review the budget documents, please visit: https://budget.gc.ca/