Mental Health, Substance Abuse Services In Oklahoma Face Budget Cuts
OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services will outline the programs being eliminated due to budget cuts in the state’s behavioral health care system during a news conference Wednesday.
With more than 950,000 Oklahomans struggling with mental illness the cuts will impact 1 in 4 residents. The agency’s commissioner, Terri White, is calling these cuts unbearable.
If additional funds are not allocated for the 2018 fiscal year, the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services will be forced to initiate a $75 million cut. To put it into perspective, that accounts for more than 20% of the agencies overall budget.
As a result, officials say they'll be forced to eliminate entire programs setting off a ripple effect hurting the people they serve and the people who help them, and eliminating thousands of jobs.
The agency will be discussing specific cut scenarios at a news conference today at 1 p.m. You’ll be able to watch it live on News9.com, the News 9 app and the News 9 Facebook page.