The Government of Saskatchewan will not be reducing funding to community-based organizations (CBOs) that are funded by Regional Heath Authorities (RHAs).
In the Lloydminster region those CBOs include the Libbie Young Centre, the Edwards Society, the Canadian Mental Health Association and more.
Initially, the Saskatchewan government had asked RHAs to consult with their CBOs to plan for a 10% reduction in funding to help control spending. Health Minister Jim Reiter announced Thursday that the province will not be going ahead with that.
“Our government is focused on providing quality health care services to the people of Saskatchewan and we value the work of health-funded CBOs as they help us to achieve that,” says Reiter.
He adds, “after conducting the most comprehensive review of health-funded CBOs in close to 10 years, we have decided not to proceed with the 10 per cent reduction.”
“We really appreciate the fact that the government looked at that and has said no, even a 10% reduction is not something they want to do,” says Vice-President of Primary Health Services with the Prairie North Health Region Vikki Smart.
She adds, “we work very closely with the CBOs involved and they are so many times around individuals who are compromised in one way or another and some of that being around mental health.”
Smarts says without these organizations “there are people that would be terribly marginalized in our society. Through these programs, they’re supported in having safe housing, living as independently as they are able to within the confines of their disability and mental health issues and it allows people to have a meaningful life.”
“Without these CBOs I don’t know that these individuals would be allowed that freedom or have an ability to live in the community successfully.”