Get Help

For people seeking support with mental health, finding a warmline, and locating resources in your community.

Peer Run Warm Line

Línea de apoyo de MHV, atendida y administrada por pares

Addiction Recovery Support Warm Line

Mental Health Resources

Mental Health Screenings

DIY Tools

Probation Peer Support

Get Information

For people wanting information about Virginia mental health legislation and policy, as well as in-person trainings and webinars to help understand, improve and maintain your mental health.

Latest News


Recovery Education

Facilitator Training

Peer Leadership Training

Trauma-Informed Resilience Training

On Demand Webinars

Virginia PRS Network

Get Involved

For people looking to get involved with mental health outreach, advocate for policy reform in the mental and behavioral health field, and support our mission to improve the mental health of all Virginians. 


Virginia Behavioral Health Advisory Council

Ways to Give


In Memoriam

Victory for Mental Health

About Us

Mental Health Virginia is the oldest mental health advocacy organization in Virginia.

Annual Reports

Virginia Affiliates

Contact Us

Transformative Investment in Mental Health Still Possible

Written by Bruce Cruser

Bruce Cruser has been Executive Director of Mental Health Virginia since 2016, bringing a background in social work and community corrections, and many years of leadership experience in local and state government.

February 23, 2023

As the Virginia legislature finishes its work, many bills to improve access to mental health care appear headed for passage. However, any major improvement in mental health care will require substantial funding.

Virginia ranks near the bottom compared to other states in access to a professional behavioral health care provider. The system has been underfunded for so long that it needs massive investments. Polling shows Virginians Support Major Investments in Behavioral Health

The Governor’s budget is a great start, and the House and Senate budgets all include additional funding for needed services, including more crisis receiving centers and crisis stabilization units, and doubling the amount specifically for children’s crisis services.

However, the current session may be extended because House and Senate budgets are $1 billion apart due to different positions on tax cuts and revenue projections.  The Senate version does much more than the House version to bolster mental health services.

We urge support for the following items in the Senate’s proposed budget (There are many more items needing support, but these Senate amendments are at the top of our list because they will get more people the care they need, when they need it):

·         Increased Medicaid payment rates for a number of community mental health services.  This is essential for providers to serve individuals who have Medicaid insurance – Item 304#4s

·         Compensation increases for Virginia’s “safety net” public mental health agencies (Community Services Boards) to help address severe staff vacancy rates – Item 313#5s

·         More Local Crisis Receiving Centers and Crisis Stabilization Units that provide crisis care close to home and without a need for hospitalization – Item 312#1s

 ·         Increase Permanent Supportive Housing that frees up more expensive hospital beds by expanding housing with services for patients who are cleared for discharge, but remain in the hospital because they have nowhere to go – Item 313#1s

 ·         Expand the successful Virginia Mental Health Access Program (VMAP), giving more medical providers who aren’t mental health specialists access to mental health consultation – 312#2s

 ·         “Cover All Kids” – Include income eligible children in Medicaid/Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) regardless of immigration status (approximately 13,000 uninsured children). – Item 305 #1s

 The final budget compromise will be negotiated by the budget conference committee. To voice your support for any of the amendments, you should contact the committee members ASAP through the links below. It helps to let your own delegate and senator know as well (and if they happen to be on the conference committee, all the better):

The House conferees:

Barry Knight

Luke Torian

Mark Sickles

Terry Austin

Robert Bloxom

Emily Brewer

The Senate conferees:

Janet Howell

George Barker

Richard Saslaw

Mamie Locke

Louise Lucas

Emmett Hanger

Steve Newman

Tommy Norment

You May Also Like…

We are now Mental Health Virginia

We are now Mental Health Virginia

“Mental Health Virginia” - We’ve shortened our name, but not our mission. There’s a lot going on this May for Mental...

New Beginnings

New Beginnings

Embarking on new journeys, whether it's starting an internship, a new school environment, or diving into a new job,...