FREDERICTON (GNB) – Mental health is on the minds of many people as a global pandemic continues to affect their daily lives.

The provincial government is recognizing National Mental Health Week, May 4-10.

“I know the past couple of months have been challenging for everyone,” said Premier Blaine Higgs. “We must take care of ourselves and each other. I encourage everyone to stay connected with friends and family whether by phone or FaceTime. Those connections are crucial to maintaining our mental health.

Social Development Minister Dorothy Shephard said everyone reacts differently during a crisis.

“Feeling anxious or stressed is normal,” said Shephard. “It is important to take care of our emotional health. Reaching out to talk to someone is not a sign of weakness, it is a sign of strength.”

Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health, said although the past few weeks have been challenging, the ties that bind New Brunswickers together as a province have never been stronger.

“Although we cannot always support one another in person, we can stay in touch by using technology or the telephone,” said Russell. “If someone is on your mind, reach out and let them know you are thinking of them.”

Mental health services in New Brunswick

A list of provincial addiction and mental health centres is available online. There are several other mental health resources available 24 hours a day, seven days a week:

  • 911 for emergencies
  • CHIMO (1-800-667-5005)
  • Canada Suicide Prevention Service is available across Canada via toll-free phone, chat or text for people thinking about or affected by suicide (1-833-456-4566)
  • Kids Help Phone (1-800-668-6868) includes text-based, mobile app and website support

Mental health survey

Statistics Canada is collecting information on the effect of COVID-19 on Canadians’ mental health and well-being. The online questionnaire is available until May 11.

Up-to-date information about COVID-19 is available online.