Messmer Column: Mental Health Awareness Month

Local Sources - In this week's Messmer Report, Indiana Senator Mark Messmer focuses on mental health.

In an effort to spread awareness and fight stigmas surrounding mental health, May is recognized as Mental Health Awareness Month. This month serves as an opportunity for us to come together and discuss mental health care and how to support individuals struggling with their mental health. 

This session, my colleagues and I supported new laws that will expand access to mental health care and help us gather more data on the issue.

I was proud to support House Enrolled Act 1222 to expand Indiana's network of community behavioral health clinics. These facilities provide a wide array of mental health and addiction services while partnering with local institutions like schools, hospitals or law enforcement agencies to ensure those in need of treatment have that option readily available to them. These programs have shown promise and I look forward to seeing more of them across Indiana.

I also supported Senate Enrolled Act 84, which requires the Indiana Department of Health to produce a report that tracks the number of suicide and substance abuse-related fatalities. This monthly report will be done by county and track the demographics of each victim, as well as the method of suicide or overdose. In doing so, the state will receive better data that will help us make informed public policy decisions in an effort to curb suicide and overdose-related fatalities and better help individuals in need of mental health care.

Mental health struggles may seem like a never-ending battle, but there are resources available. If you or someone you know is in need of support, call 221 or visit  

As always, feel free to contact my office directly with your questions and concerns by email at [email protected] or by phone at 800-382-9467.