Overview from Mayor Demings
We have a crisis in our country’s mental health system, which has never been properly funded for continuum of care and prevention. On a local level, the result of this monumental national failure is thousands of individuals in Orange County with mental health and/or addiction issues who are either on the streets or in prison – two places they definitely should not be.
As a community, we need to do better. On May 18, 2021, Orange County’s Mental Health and Homelessness Division presented a gaps analysis of our mental and behavioral health system. The Orange County Board of County Commissioners and I unanimously agreed for the United Way of Central Florida to convene a group of thought leaders to begin the dialogue on improving our community’s mental and behavioral health system of care, provide recommendations, as well as validate the gaps identified in the preliminary analysis. The culmination of that eight-month effort is a comprehensive report titled Orange County Mental and Behavioral Health System of Care Community Analysis.
On February 22, 2022, the Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved to accept the report. The next steps include creating a implementation team of community stakeholders who will lead Orange County in creating a public, private and philanthropic partnership on addressing the gaps and recommendation within the report.