Pikangikum First Nation Suicide Crisis Prompts Funding For 20 Mental Health Workers

Ontario Health Minister Eric Hoskins is announcing funding for 20 full-time mental health workers for Pikangikum First Nation — a remote community struggling with a suicide crisis and pressing mental health needs from about 380 people seeking counselling.

The mental health workers will be going to the reserve, located near the Ontario and Manitoba border, immediately at a cost of about $1.6 million dollars, Hoskins said.

"This can't be an issue of jurisdiction," Hoskins said in an interview with The Canadian Press.

"We heard directly from the chief ... as well as others that the situation on the ground in Pikangikum, just how grave it is and the need for trauma counselling as well as broader mental health supports for children and youth at risk."

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