Mental illness is a key driver in homelessness. Diane has noted that these challenges go back to a closure of facilities like Riverview (with its considerable concerns) without any plan for what community based mental health would look like. She has pointed to inadequate care for individuals who need access to more permanent housing and care options and the revolving door of emergency visits calling it a “disgrace and a fiasco”. Specifically Diane supports the following:
- The development of a comprehensive province wide strategy on mental health
- A review of the Mental Health Act
- Initiatives such as Assertive Community Team (ACT) which involves outreach-oriented comprehensive community treatment, rehabilitation, and support service designed to meet the needs of people with severe and persistent mental illness. The service is provided to participants in their homes, at work and in community settings. Most people with mental health diagnosis can live effectively in the community with supports.
- A stronger system of housing and supports along the continuum including greater long- term facilities and housing for those who clearly cannot live on their own