[Deborrah Sherman, Former Executive Director of OPDI, seated in a green leather chair]
It’s important to understand that of all the people that walk through their doors and come to see them they need to keep in mind that fully one-fifth of those people are probably going to have some kind of mental health issue.
And so it is important that they are prepared to work with people and are doing what they need to do to educate themselves or build capacity within their programs or businesses
to make sure that the workers are able to serve that population, rather than just close the book and say, we can’t help you, or we have to send you down the road, or we have to send you to somewhere else and we don’t know where.
So, by building capacity within those groups and organizations and services to recognize that mental health issues are much bigger than we’ve thought before, and that one-fifth of the population is a huge number and deserves to be paid attention to.