CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — Some officials in Cumberland County think the county is on the verge of a mental health crisis, particularly when it comes to mental health funding.
Annie Strite, Cumberland County’s mental health director, says mental health services have grown in need over the last 13 years, but funding has either remained the same or decreased.
There is a lack of availability for mental health services in the county, and most residents are on waitlists that are months long, Strite says.
Strite also says people are being sent to prisons and emergency rooms because they can’t access mental health help.
To make matters worse, staffing shortages are currently rampant in the mental health field.
“We’re going to be taking some time to look at our budget, look at how the county is spending its funds, and then ultimately make some recommendations,” Strite said. “Are there some things we can perhaps decrease and do as little damage as possible to continue to support our community?”
A town hall meeting will be held on community services, and Strite is looking to speak with local lawmakers.