TORONTO, Oct. 10, 2019 /CNW/ - The Ontario Association of Social Workers (OASW) applauds the province for its investment of nearly $40 million towards providing front line services to advance student mental health, including a commitment of $25 million in permanent funding for secondary schools to hire 180 (FTE) social workers and other mental health providers.
"There is a pressing and growing need to implement strategies to diagnose, address and improve the mental health of children and youth in Ontario," said Dr. Deepy Sur, CEO of the Ontario Association of Social Workers. "By virtue of the amount of time children spend in schools, and the important contact schools provide all children and families, the school setting serves as a primary intervention site for children and youth mental health."
Within the school setting a key role exists to help address mental health issues, School Social Workers. These highly trained professionals provide early intervention and mental health support to children, youth and families who might not otherwise have easy and timely access to such services. However, there are not enough School Social Workers hired across the province to support our children and youth, which is something today's funding will help address.
"I applaud the government for recognizing both the urgent need as well as the important role social workers play in schools to support our children and youth," said Dr. Sur. "Today's announcement will go a long way to increase student access to critical mental health services."
There are over 20,000 Registered Social Workers (RSWs) in Ontario, making social work the largest regulated profession providing counselling and psychotherapy services in the province.
OASW is the voice of social work in Ontario. It is a voluntary, provincial, non-profit association which represents approximately 6,000 members. OASW works to actively speak on behalf of social workers on issues of interest to the profession and advocates for the improvement of social policies and programs directly affecting social work practice and client groups served.
SOURCE Ontario Association of Social Workers
For further information: Vanessa Rankin, Research and Policy Manager, 416-923-4848 ext. 231, [email protected]