Governor's Task Force on Mental Health
Active dates:July 2016 - November 2016
Function: The task force will advise the governor and the legislature on mental health system improvements by developing comprehensive recommendations to design, implement, and sustain a full continuum of mental health services. The task force will also make recommendations on developing policies, legislative changes, and funding; defining rules and responsibilities for the state, counties, and health providers; reforms needed to support transition between levels of care; expanding the capacity of the mental health system to serve people of diverse cultures and backgrounds.
The task force will report to the Governor's office, the Legislature, and the public by November 15, 2016, ahead of the 2017-2018 fiscal year budgeting process.
Governor Dayton's executive order states that more than 200,000 adults and 75,000 children in Minnesota live with a mental illness. People wait an average of ten years between first experiencing mental health symptoms and accessing treatment. Numerous reports have highlighted the cross-sector challenges faced by Minnesotans in need of mental health care. The purpose of the task force is to develop comprehensive recommendations to design, implement, and sustain a full continuum of mental health services throughout Minnesota.
The first scheduled meeting was July 11, 2016. The Task Force met seven times between July and November 2016 and also worked in teams to develop their recommendations.
The Task Force prepared a final report to the governor and Legislature that included nine recommendations for transforming Minnesota's mental health system into a comprehensive continuum of care. The final report was delivered to Governor Mark Dayton on November 15, 2016.
Members will be appointed by the governor and will include: the Commissioner of the Department of Human Services; four individuals or family members of individuals with lived experience of mental health issues; two mental health advocates; two representatives of community mental health services; two representatives of hospital systems; two representatives from law enforcement; a representative from the counties; and a representative from the judicial branch.
The task force shall include four ex-officio leaders from state agencies, who shall be appointed by the Governor: the Commissioner of the Department of Health; the Commissioner of the Department of Corrections; the State Director to Prevent and End Homelessness; and the Ombudsperson for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities.
The task force shall include four ex-officio legislative members, who shall be appointed by caucus leadership: a member of the majority party in the Senate; a member of the minority party in the Senate; a member of the majority party in the House of Representatives; and a member of the minority party in the House of Representatives.
The chair of the Task Force will be the Commissioner of the Department of Human Services. Emily Johnson Piper serves as the Commissioner of DHS (2016).
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