Here we are in August already, with the end of summer and the start of school and fall activities looming ahead of us. I hope you have had the opportunity to get outside and enjoy the long, warm summer days. There is nothing quite like the big sky and fresh air of Montana to rejuvenate the mind, body and soul.
With the back-to-school season upon us, this issue of INK will highlight the incredible work being done by our CSCT teams across the state and our team at the Center for Excellence in Anaconda. I encourage you to make the time to read each of the stories in this issue – you are sure to be inspired, not only by our team, but by the people we serve and the successes they have achieved.
And finally, while the 2023 legislative session has come and gone, there are still many things happening that will impact the future of community-based mental health services in Montana, including the Behavioral Health System for Future Generations Commission created by House Bill 872 of the 2023 Legislative Session. This commission will provide recommendations to Governor Gianforte regarding the $300 million from HB872 which provides a generational investment to reform and improve Montana’s behavioral health and developmental disabilities service systems. See here for more information regarding the Commission and how you can weigh in.
I am optimistic about the discussions taking place and hope to see an investment in services like ours that offer early intervention and access to care before people go into crisis. Investing in community-based mental health is in the best interest of Montana, by helping people live as independently as possible, helping families stay together, and saving taxpayer dollars. I encourage you to continue your advocacy efforts. Please provide feedback to your representatives and Governor Gianforte emphasizing the importance of these services.
Thank you for your support and commitment to our mission. I hope you are inspired by this issue of INK and that the rest of your summer is fantastic.
Matt Bugni – CEO