May 25-31, 2021: Behavioral Health Workers Week

WHEREAS, Michigan's behavioral health workforce consists of thousands of therapists, treatment providers, supervisors, peer supports, paraprofessionals, counselors, case managers, social workers, nurses, administrative support staff, psychiatrists, psychologists, and other clinicians; and,


WHEREAS, these highly-trained and dedicated professionals are the backbone of treatment delivery, spending their careers supporting children, adolescents, adults, and older adults living with emotional disorders, developmental disabilities, mental illnesses, and substance use disorders; and,


WHEREAS, behavioral health workers have adjusted treatment methods during the COVID-19 pandemic to meet clinical needs while courageously facing coronavirus risks at great personal peril; and,


WHEREAS, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 50% of Americans will be diagnosed with a mental illness or disorder at some point in their lifetime, with one in five Americans experiencing a mental illness in a given year; and,


WHEREAS, in Michigan, nearly 4.5% of adults live with serious mental health conditions such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depression; and,


WHEREAS, data from the Michigan Opioids Task Force Annual Report shows the opioid epidemic continues to require front-and-center attention from a well-versed behavioral health workforce; and,


WHEREAS, according to a recent report by the Michigan Suicide Prevention Commission, suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in Michigan; and,


WHEREAS, Michigan's behavioral health workers conduct their duties upholding ethical and professional standards, driven by a mission to include everyone; and,


WHEREAS, these workers assess the needs and connect individuals to countless other services and supports, including medicine, food assistance, housing, and other community resources; and,


WHEREAS, these workers strive every day to promote recovery, raise mental health awareness, and combat stigma associated with disabilities, mental health conditions, and substance use issues;


NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim May 25-31, 2021 as Behavioral Health Workers Week in Michigan.