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Schumer, Gillibrand Announce $36M Investment In Mental Health For Upstate New York

After Pandemic Exacerbated Mental Health Crisis In U.S., Community Resources And Care Have Become Increasingly Important, Senators Say

Schumer, Gillibrand: Funding For Mental Health Is Investment In New York’s Most Vulnerable Residents

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced in federal funding for mental health treatment and research centers throughout New York state through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The senators heralded the news of the funding, saying it comes at a critical time for New Yorkers during the COVID pandemic, which has exacerbated the national mental health crisis.

“No one should have to fight the battle against mental illness alone,” said Senator Schumer. “As New Yorkers, we are stronger when we are together, and today’s federal funding will work to rally community resources surrounding mental health care and research. Those facing mental health battles need our support now more than ever, and I’m proud to deliver this SAMHSA funding that will bring community support for our most vulnerable residents.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has worsened a nationwide mental health crisis,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This federal funding will help ensure that New Yorkers struggling with mental health and addiction have ongoing access to comprehensive, integrated care. I will continue fighting for resources for mental health and addiction treatment centers throughout New York State and make sure that New Yorkers who need care can get it.”

The funding announced today comes from the Community Mental Health Block Grant and will help provide necessary mental health resources for communities by supporting mental health research and fortifying mental health and substance abuse treatment services. 

Schumer has been a staunch advocate for mental health services in Upstate New York, including for Liberty Resources in Central New York, which received funding today. The senator visited Liberty Resources in 2019 to launch a three-pronged plan to combat the devastating uptick of suicide deaths in Central New York, and wrote a letter of support for the organization earlier this year. Liberty Resources serves Onondaga, Monroe, Oswego and Madison Counties and with the funding announced today, expects to be able to serve an additional 500 community members.

“Liberty Resources is grateful to be the recipient of the Federal Community Mental Health Center Grant to support Mental Health and Substance Abuse services in our communities throughout CNY and Rochester NY,” said Carl Coyle, CEO Liberty Resources, Inc.  “My deepest gratitude goes to Senator Schumer for providing the Senate leadership which made these grants available throughout our nation, in response to the significant stress on all Americans due to COVID.  With Suicide and overdose rates increasing significantly, this support is critically needed for treatment providers like Liberty Resources in meeting the increased demand for service in our local communities. This Grant will particularly strengthen our service delivery system in the over 48 schools and school Districts where our counselors provide desperately needed services to our youth and their families.”

In April 2021, Senator Schumer visited Access: Supports for Living Mental Health and Substance Use Urgent Care to announce the $4 million he secured for the continuation of mental health and substance abuse services in the City of Newburgh. The senator has been a supporter of Access Mental Health and Substance Use Urgent Case since the inception of the facility  in December of 2018, securing $2 million so the facility could open in May of 2019. Access provides mental health services to Orange, Ulster, and Rockland counties. 




Western New York

SUNY Buffalo


Western New York

Bestself Behavioral Health Inc.


Finger Lakes

University of Rochester


Finger Lakes

County of Seneca


Southern Tier

Cornell University


Southern Tier

Cornell University


Hudson Valley

Access: Supports for Living Inc.


Hudson Valley

The Guidance Center of Westchester Inc.


Hudson Valley

Bikur Cholim Inc.


Hudson Valley

Mental Health Association of Westchester County Inc.


Central New York

Liberty Resources Inc.


Mohawk Valley

Upstate Cerebral Palsy Inc.


Capital Region

Behavioral Health Services North Inc.




Senator Schumer’s letter of support for Liberty Resources appears below:

Dear Secretary Becerra:

I am pleased to write in support of the application submitted by Liberty Resources Inc. (LRI) to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

With funding, Liberty Resources plans to restore the delivery of clinical services impacted by the

COVID-19 pandemic and address the needs of those with Serious Emotional Disturbance (SED), Serious Mental Illness (SMI) and Co-Occurring Disorders (COD) through its existing mental health and substance use disorder programs. LRI is ready to expand services in Onondaga, Monroe, Oswego and Madison Counties with existing physical sites and a strong base of services. LRI will provide services to 500 unduplicated individuals annually, raising their total to 1,000 individuals.

I applaud Liberty Resources Inc. for their foresight and I hope their application for funding meets with your approval.

Thank you for your consideration. Please do not hesitate to contact me or my Grants Coordinator, Jeff Dickson, in my Washington, DC office at 202-224-6542.


Senator Schumer’s letter of support for Access: Supports for Living appears below:

Dear Secretary Becerra,

I write today in strong support of the application submitted by Access: Supports for Living (Access) for a Community Mental Health Services Block Grant to provide increased mental health services in historically marginalized and underserved communities in New York's Hudson Valley region. Specifically, targeting Middletown, Newburgh, Kingston, Ellenville, and Wawarsing, this $2,108,134 proposal would greatly benefit over 2 million Hudson Valley residents struggling with mental health issues through a new Rapid Engagement and Community Health (REACH) team. 

As one of the largest Behavioral Health and Human Service providers in the Mid-Hudson, Access has created this innovative proposal to establish the REACH team. This Team will serve Orange and Ulster County residents with serious emotional disturbances, mental illnesses, and co-occurring disorders outside of its clinic’s four walls. The REACH team will support individuals living in the historically underserved and marginalized communities of Middletown, Newburgh, Kingston, Ellenville, and Wawarsing, with a specific focus on engaging with Latinx individuals to provide community-based care.

The Access REACH team is critically important because adults living in poverty are almost 2 times more likely to experience serious mental illness and the average combined poverty rate in Middletown, Newburgh, Kingston, Ellenville, and Wawarsing is 20%, compared to 13% statewide. Moreover, according to a recent Mid-Hudson Community Health Assessment, 82.5% of people in Orange County and 68% of people in Ulster County are highly impacted by mental health issues. Mental health was also considered one of the top three most significant issues affecting health in both Ulster and Orange County. 

The REACH team will improve access to mental health services experienced by these communities. Through these funds, the REACH team will expand and enhance the existing capacity of the Access Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic Expansion grant sites in Middletown, Newburgh, and Kingston to meet their target communities’ growing Behavioral Health needs. Thank you for your consideration and please do not hesitate to reach out to my office with any questions.