Connie Ladenburg header

Council defeats Behavioral Health ordinance 

Last night, the Pierce County Council had an opportunity to support the most vulnerable in our community. Instead, the Council chose to defeat Ordinance 2016-57s, the one tenth of one percent for behavioral health. The ordinance would have collected an estimated $17 per person annually to provide services to those dealing with mental health and substance abuse challenges.

The vote was 4-3 and a supermajority of 5 was needed to pass the ordinance. As a co-sponsor of this ordinance and the HSRI study, I expected my Council colleagues to demonstrate leadership and start addressing the significant issues surrounding behavioral health in Pierce County. Instead, our shameful inaction will only lead to a worsening situation.  

This vote comes after months of information gathering and public feedback on behavioral health. I want to sincerely thank everyone who took the time to bravely share their experiences and expertise. I want you to know that you were heard and appreciated. Your passion and concern came through loud and clear.

I am, quite frankly, angry at this outcome but I will continue to fight to ensure resources are available for individuals with behavioral health needs.

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