MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES ACT
In November 2004, California voters passed Proposition 63, the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA). The MHSA provides for a 1% tax on taxable personal income over $1 million. MHSA tax revenues will be distributed to California counties through a contract with the California Department of Health Care Services (DCHS).
MHSA is focused on transforming the mental health care system by improving quality of life for individuals living with mental illness and those at risk of developing mental illness. MHSA provides funding for outreach, prevention and early intervention, improved access to services, support services, family involvement and treatment for unserved and underserved communities. While providing services in these areas, MHSA adheres to five principles:
- Cultural Competence – Services reflect the values, customs, beliefs, and languages of the populations served and eliminate disparities in service access.
- Community Collaboration - Services strengthen partnerships with diverse sectors to help create opportunities for employment, housing, and education.
- Client, Consumer, and Family Involvement - Services engage clients, consumers, and families in all aspects of the mental health system, including planning, policy development, service delivery and evaluation.
- Integrated Service Delivery - Services reinforce coordinated agency efforts to create a seamless experience for clients, consumers and families.
- Wellness and Recovery – Services promote recovery and resiliency by allowing clients and consumers to participate in defining their own goals, so they can live fulfilling and productive lives.
These programs are designed to reach faith-based, rural, and other underserved communities. A primary goal is to reduce the stigma that prevents individuals from seeking mental health help. These programs accomplish their goal by increasing awareness of and sensitivity to mental health illness. Programs offer outreach activities and referrals to mental health and other services. These programs include:
- One Step A La Vez, serving the communities of Fillmore, Santa Paula and Piru, focuses on engaging youth in positive experiences and providing support and referrals for underserved Hispanic/Latino youth and adults.
- Project Esperanza, serving the communities of Santa Paula and Fillmore, focuses on reducing stigma and discrimination among unserved and underserved populations through increasing awareness and sensitivity to mental health issues.
- Tri-County GLAD works to address the social service needs of deaf and hard of hearing (DHH) individuals Countywide. The agency offers advocacy, communication access, peer counseling, employment and community education services to the DHH community. TC GLAD is focused on increasing awareness and knowledge regarding mental health in the DHH community.
- Rainbow Umbrella hosts free, confidential support groups for LGBTQ+ youth. They provide mental health education and stigma reduction through community groups and meetings.