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How Denver Voters Decided to Help Address a Major Health Equity Gap

"One story that struck Herod on the campaign trail was at the Gilliam youth detention center in Denver’s Whittier neighborhood, where a staffer told her that “80 percent of the young people coming in have a mental health or substance abuse issue; and 100 percent leave with them.”

 

"Herod and other supporters say the new funding is aimed at narrowing an enormous health equity gap in behavioral services."

 

“Compared with the majority population, members of racial and ethnic minority groups in the U.S. are less likely to have access to mental health services, less likely to use community mental health services, more likely to use inpatient hospitalization and emergency rooms, and more likely to receive lower quality care,” according to the Minority Health and Mental Health Disparities Program of the National Institute of Mental Health."

 

"Even in public schools, Herod said, some Denver neighborhoods are able to support funding for activities or behavioral services that other schools can’t afford."

 

“Those who can least afford it are the ones who are hurt the most,” she said."

 

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