FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government and the Canadian Mental Health Association are asking New Brunswickers to Get Loud about what mental health really is, and to use the hashtag #GetLoud on social media during Mental Health Week, May 7-13.

“Mental health affects all New Brunswickers,” said Health Minister Benoît Bourque. “It is encouraging to see so many people speaking up and supporting one another. As a government, we are committed to creating environments that are supportive of mental health, as well as improving access to care and resources.”

Bourque said everyone’s mental health should be nurtured so that all New Brunswickers can develop to their fullest potential, adding that mental health is as important as physical health, and should be a priority for everyone.

Enhancing the capacity of individuals and communities to take control of their lives and improve their mental health is a key element of improving mental health for all New Brunswickers. Good mental health can help prevent or manage physical and mental illness. Just as a person takes care of his or her body by eating properly and exercising, measures can be taken to protect and strengthen mental health.

For example, it is important to create supportive environments for a person’s actions to be sustainable. During Mental Health Week, the public is encouraged to visit the Wellness Movement Facebook page to learn how to make a difference by creating supportive environments.

The New Brunswick Mental Health Action Plan emphasizes mental health promotion, change in service delivery, early identification of mental illness and effective intervention, and a shift in attitudes and values towards mental health. Specific initiatives will involve collaboration among the government, educators, employers and non-government organizations.

To learn how to #GetLoud about mental health, and how to get involved in the week’s activities and events, visit the Mental Health Week website.