Lawmakers push to ensure mental health, substance abuse aren't forgotten in COVID funding

August 20, 2020
In The News

“My job as a representative of NY 19 is to ring the alarm as early and as often as humanly possible.”

That alarm came in the form of a letter sent to congressional leadership this month.

Representative Antonio Delgado joined Representative Paul Tonko and other lawmakers in calling for the next round of coronavirus funding to support mental health and substance abuse treatment.

“Folks dealing with substance abuse folks who even before the pandemic - we really weren’t meeting the challenge of providing for, now more than ever we must meet that moment.”

Some of the very programs you see every week on Dose of Reality, could be hurt by cuts to state and local funding.

Congressman Delgado says making sure they have the money they need is non-negotiable.

“The notion that we're not going to account for the mental strain that might bring to bear on individuals and families is not consistent with our values, if we're really about compassion.”

As this next round of stimulus makes its long and meandering way through Washington - there will inevitably be countless organizations trying to get their piece.

Lawmakers behind this letter say it’s one way to make sure these organizations aren't forgotten.

“You write the letters to leadership, you say here's the priorities we cannot walk away from these priorities this is a moment we have to be able to meet,” Delgado said.