Advocacy and Public Policy at Thresholds
Access to treatment, harm reduction services, affordable housing, and meaningful employment opportunities are human rights for individuals living with serious mental health or substance use conditions. Thresholds fights for racial, social, economic, and health equity for individuals living with mental health and substance use conditions, particularly for individuals marginalized by systemic barriers to care.
Improving Access to Mental Health and Substance Use Care
Mental health and substance use treatment can stabilize symptoms, promote wellness, and enable a high quality of life. Too many Illinoisans experience preventable hospitalizations, challenges in school or work, criminalization, overdose, or suicide because of a lack of access to support.
Services that use a Harm Reduction approach are rooted in human rights, kindness, and compassion. Harm reduction is focused on saving lives, protecting health, and promoting dignity for people who use drugs (PWUD). Thresholds advocates for solutions that engage people wherever they are in their path to recovery.
Creating Equity and Fighting Structural Racism
Black, Indigenous and Other People of Color (BIPOC) are disproportionately impacted by a lack of access to treatment in their communities. They are less likely to receive medication or therapy for a mental health or substance use condition, and more likely to experience criminalization related to their condition than are white individuals. Thresholds works to fight structural racism and create equity in access to care and other support services.
Increasing Access to Affordable Housing and Employment Opportunities
A lack of access to safe, affordable housing and employment opportunities for people experiencing serious mental health or substance use conditions results in homelessness and criminalization. Housing is healthcare. Employment, volunteerism and other vocational opportunities give individuals purpose and hope in life, while also providing economic stability.
Recent Legislative Wins or Current Advocacy Efforts