The NDP is calling on the Yukon Government to provide more mental health services to rural youth.
In the legislature yesterday, Kevin Barr, the MLA for Mount Lorne-Southern Lakes, said recent health behaviour data shows that rural youth are more prone to need mental health services, compared to kids in Whitehorse. He wanted to know what Health Minister Doug Graham is doing about it.
“What targets has the minister responsible for health and social services set to improve mental health services for Yukon's rural youth?" Barr asked.
Graham replied there are two mental health nurses for rural Yukon — one based in Dawson City, the other in Haines Junction.
He says those nurses travel to other communities, and the government hires private counselling services, such as Many Rivers Counselling Services.
"These folks from Many Rivers travel to the communities on a regular basis as well so it's very difficult for me to say 'We provide services in x community seven times a year.' We attempt to prioritize the requirement for mental health services and visit communities on that basis."
Barr wanted to know if workers have too many cases.
Graham said he didn't know.