Mental/Behavioral Health

Mental Health Check Ins:

We are proud to announce that our members have organized and launched weekly mental health check ins that will be essential for all of our health and well-being!

weekly mental health check in sessions:

Tuesdays from 9am-10am register ahead of time hereAnd Tuesdays from 7pm-8pm register here

Click here to take our survey!

The purpose of our coalition is to unite and advocate for higher standards, better service, and working conditions for all those affected with mental/behavioral health issues. We have joined together to create healthier communities and better outcomes for all.

Join Our AFSCME Members Leading Minnesotans For Better Mental Health Care For Our Next Behavioral Health Summit

This summit will focus on providing basic education about some of the more common mental health illnesses and discussing how we can actively work to reduce stigma in our workplaces.

When: Sep 12, 2020 11:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada) 

Register in advance for this meeting here. 

Come together with other behavioral health workers for a free three-part training series hosted by AFSCME's United We Heal.

"United We Heal is a community of therapists, case managers, peers, support staff and allies, all motivated by a shared mission to help our clients heal. We aspire to a system that puts healing first as we work towards concrete solutions that will allow behavioral health professionals to deliver the quality care that clients and their families deserve."

Improving Cultural Competency for Behavioral health professionals:

This program is accredited for 4 – 5.5 contact hours for counselors, nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists, and social workers. Other professionals may earn a Statement of Participation. Register here

Minnesota Resources:

The Minnesota Department of Human Services supports many programs and services for people living with mental illness. Contact your health care provider, health care plan, county or tribe for more information about services available

Emergency mental health services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week:

  • Mental health crisis phone numbers are listed by county.
  • If you have questions about COVID-19, call the Department of Health at 651-201-3920 or 1-800-657-3903 from 7 am – 7 pm Monday through Friday.

Click here for adult mental health programs and services? (DHS)

COVID Cares offers free telephone support

Free telephone support 833-HERE4MN (833-437-3466), 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., 7 days a week

The COVID Cares Support Service is a free telephone support service staffed by volunteer licensed mental health and substance use disorder personnel. The volunteers are available for 20-minute support calls to listen, share resources and tools, and talk with all Minnesotans experiencing stress.

The service started in April through a collaboration with volunteers from the Minnesota Psychiatric Society, the Minnesota Psychological Association, the Minnesota Black Psychologists, and Mental Health Minnesota. The free service is also accessible at FastTrackerMN.org where searchers can also find psychiatric and mental health services availability and real-time Substance Use Disorder Treatment program openings.   

COVID Cares Support Service Information Links:

DHS Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities:

  • The Ombudsman is an independent governmental official who receives complaints against government (and government regulated) agencies and/or its officials, who investigates, and who if the complaints are justified, takes action to remedy the complaints.

Concerns or complaints can come from any source. Complaints should involve the actions of an agency, facility, or program and can be person-specific or a system-wide concern. Use one of the methods below to file a complaint with the Office of Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities (OMHDD):

  1. Contact a Regional Ombudsman for the county the person is in. Use the Regional Map or the Regional Ombudsman by County list.
  2. Call the OMHDD: 651-757-1800 or 1-800-657-3506.
  3. Email the OMHDD:[email protected]
  4. Fax the OMHDD: 651-797-1950
  5. Send us a letter by US postal mail: 

    The Office of Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities 
    121 7th Place East 
    Suite 420 Metro Square Building 
    St. Paul, Minnesota 55101-2117 

STRESS AND COPING

Español

Need Help? Know Someone Who Does?

Contact the Disaster Distress Helpline | Call 1-800-985-5990
Contact the National Domestic Violence | Call 1-800-799-7233 and TTY 1-800-787-3224 

Thehotline.org can help!

The outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) may be stressful for people. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger.

Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations. How you respond to the outbreak can depend on your background, the things that make you different from other people, and the community you live in.

People with preexisting mental health conditions should continue with their treatment and be aware of new or worsening symptoms. Additional information can be found at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website.

Taking care of yourself, your friends, and your family can help you cope with stress. Helping others cope with their stress can also make your community stronger.

Reduce stress in yourself and others

Things you can do to support yourself

  • Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting.
  • Take care of your body. Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditateexternal icon. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep, and avoid alcohol and drugsexternal icon.
  • Make time to unwind. Try to do some other activities you enjoy.
  • Connect with others. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling.
  • Call your healthcare provider if stress gets in the way of your daily activities for several days in a row.
  • Reduce stress in yourself and others

Sharing the facts about COVID-19 and understanding the actual risk to yourself and people you care about can make an outbreak less stressful.

When you share accurate information about COVID-19 you can help make people feel less stressed and allow you to connect with them.

Learn more about taking care of your emotional health.

For parents

Children and teens react, in part, on what they see from the adults around them. When parents and caregivers deal with the COVID-19 calmly and confidently, they can provide the best support for their children. Parents can be more reassuring to others around them, especially children, if they are better prepared.
Not all children and teens respond to stress in the same way.

Some common changes to watch for include:

  • Excessive crying or irritation in younger children
  • Returning to behaviors they have outgrown (for example, toileting accidents or bedwetting)
  • Excessive worry or sadness
  • Unhealthy eating or sleeping habits
  • Irritability and “acting out” behaviors in teens
  • Poor school performance or avoiding school
  • Difficulty with attention and concentration
  • Avoidance of activities enjoyed in the past
  • Unexplained headaches or body pain
  • Use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs

There are many things you can do to support your child.

  • Take time to talk with your child or teen about the COVID-19 outbreak. Answer questions and share facts about COVID-19 in a way that your child or teen can understand.
  • Reassure your child or teen that they are safe. Let them know it is ok if they feel upset. Share with them how you deal with your own stress so that they can learn how to cope from you.
  • Limit your family’s exposure to news coverage of the event, including social media. Children may misinterpret what they hear and can be frightened about something they do not understand.
  • Try to keep up with regular routines. If schools are closed, create a schedule for learning activities and relaxing or fun activities.
  • Be a role model. Take breaks, get plenty of sleep, exercise, and eat well. Connect with your friends and family members.

Learn more about helping children cope.

FOR RESPONDERS

Responding to COVID-19 can take an emotional toll on you. There are things you can do to reduce secondary traumatic stress (STS) reactions:

  • Acknowledge that STS can impact anyone helping families after a traumatic event.
  • Learn the symptoms including physical (fatigue, illness) and mental (fear, withdrawal, guilt).
  • Allow time for you and your family to recover from responding to the pandemic.
  • Create a menu of personal self-care activities that you enjoy, such as spending time with friends and family, exercising, or reading a book.
  • Take a break from media coverage of COVID-19.
  • Ask for help if you feel overwhelmed or concerned that COVID-19 is affecting your ability to care for your family and patients as you did before the outbreak.

Learn more tips for taking care of yourself during emergency response.

For people who have been released from quarantine

Being separated from others if a healthcare provider thinks you may have been exposed to COVID-19 can be stressful, even if you do not get sick. Everyone feels differently after coming out of quarantine.

Some feelings include:

  • Mixed emotions, including relief after quarantine
  • Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones
  • Stress from the experience of monitoring yourself or being monitored by others for signs and symptoms of COVID-19
  • Sadness, anger, or frustration because friends or loved ones have unfounded fears of contracting the disease from contact with you, even though you have been determined not to be contagious
  • Guilt about not being able to perform normal work or parenting duties during quarantine
  • Other emotional or mental health changes

If you, or someone you care about, are feeling overwhelmed with emotions like sadness, depression, or anxiety, or feel like you want to harm yourself or others call:

  • 911
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) Disaster Distress Helpline: 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746. (TTY 1-800-846-8517)

MORE RESOURCES

For Everyone
Coping with a Disaster or Traumatic Event

For Families and Children
Helping Children Cope with Emergencies
Coping After a Disaster – A Ready Wrigley activity book for children age 3-10

For First Responders
Emergency Responders: Tips for taking care of yourself
Disaster Technical Assistance Center (SAMHSA)

Get immediate help in a crisis