More mental health resources available for unemployed Coloradans through United Way’s 211

Published: Dec. 3, 2021 at 3:53 AM MST
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - If you, or someone you know, are struggling with mental health while being unemployed, there are now more resources available.

11 News spoke with the Office of Behavioral Health and Mile High United Way. Coloradans who have lost employment can now dial 211 to learn about mental health and substance use benefits through their insurance or assistance programs; sign up for Medicaid; and explore mental health and/or substance use treatment in their community, as well as connect to other social services such as food, housing and financial assistance.

“Help is available and whether it is the crisis line or whether it’s 211. We have people who are on the other end of the phone wanting to get you the help that you need and we know that access to care is a significant need in our state,” said Liz Owens of the Office of Behavioral Health.

In June, Gov. Jared Polis charged OBH to contract with 211 Colorado to hire and train staff to offer behavioral health navigation services. The state says we’ve had more jobless Coloradans than ever the last two years during the pandemic, and Colorado’s unemployment rate has outpaced the national average throughout 2021.

“If you are focused on your employment, or your housing, or getting food for your family, it’s really hard to prioritize mental wellness on top of that,” said Owens.

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