Pitel looks for $60K support from Lambton for mental health resource guide

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A mental health advocate is asking Lambton County council for $60,000 to continue to print a resource guide for mental health support.

In 2019, Debb Pitel complied No One Stands Alone and raised the money to distribute the booklets in 46 different businesses, municipal offices, fire departments, EMS stations and libraries in Lambton County. It costs about $20,000 a year to produce the booklet.

She is now asking Lambton County to fund the booklets being placed in locations owned by the County of Lambton for three years at a cost of $60,000. Pitel says if the county would pay for the booklets in its building, the program could be expanded to local gyms and be made available during local events.

Pitel, who is also a Petrolia councillor, told Lambton county councillors recently, the booklets are necessary since searching for local information online is not easy especially if the person is in a crisis.

“When time does not leave room for second guessing or second and third chances, we need to be right,” says Pitel.

“The inability to connect to local updated information and the right agency quickly … while googling can be difficult…That would be asking people at their worst struggling and even desperate are to google for help only.

“I’m not suggesting that I have the only solution. What I’m sharing today is that at least for the last three years, my booklet has provided an alternative, a human contact and ability to find and share with others.”

Andrew Taylor, general manager of public health services in Lambton, says public health does work on mental health and it would see how it might be able to help with the resource guide.

County councillors asked staff to report back on the possibilities of helping with the resource guide in the next month.