New federal COVID aid package contains $5 billion to aid with mental health services

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U.S. Sentor Charles Schumer in Newburgh on Friday

NEWBURGH – Covid-19 has caused plenty of physical pain and suffering, but mental health for many has also suffered.

“It’s really increased the need,” said Ron Colavito, CEO of Access for Living, which helps those seeking mental health services.

Colavito said there has been an 80 percent increase in those seeking services, and his organization helped 5,000 people virtually deal with their mental health issues.

On Friday, Senator Charles Schumer was in Newburgh to help by securing $5 billion in the American Rescue Plan to aid with mental health services.

“Unfortunately, because of Covid, the needs have gotten much greater. It goes largely un-discussed and unaddressed,” said Schumer. “Too many of our neighbors are suffering in silence and need our support.”

Schumer said he will be relying on the federal Department of Health and Human Services to help implement the needed help.

“I am urging them to get moving,” he said.