Advancing Mental Health Policy
A unique and powerful new ally from our best friend ever
California’s mental health community has enjoyed an incredible run of legislative support over the past 16 years led by Darrell Steinberg, who is probably the first person elected to declare from the outset that his highest priority was to provide funding to support community mental health – especially for people who were homeless or at risk of homelessness due to their severe mental illness. His legislation in the Assembly laid the foundation for Proposition 63 which he co-authored with me. In the Senate he rose to the most powerful position in the legislature as Senate President Pro Tem. In the first few years, during a devastating state recession and budget deficits, all he could do was to minimize the losses. Finally in his last two years in office he was able to successfully get mental health front and center in the fight for very limited state budget funds for expansion of programs.