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Behavioral Health Day on the 22nd floor of the State Capitol attracted more than 175 people. The goal was to raise awareness on Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorders. First Lady Casey DeSantis joined the event to announce her new hire for a Disaster Recovery Mental Health Coordinator will first be deployed in Northwest Florida to assist in mental health efforts in the area most affected by Hurricane Michael.

This year’s Behavioral Health Day theme was “Well. Beyond Healthcare,” because healthcare is more than just physical health or a trip to the doctor’s office. Mental health and mental illness are vital aspects of healthcare. Research shows that one in five adults will experience depression, anxiety, or any mental illness within a given year. Additionally, one in six children will experience a mental health disorder each year. These statistics underscore the need to educate the public about the prevalence of mental illness and the resources available to help people live with a mental health condition.

In addition to speakers and attendees, the event attracted more than a dozen collaborative partners representing mental health organizations, law enforcement, recovery organizations, housing and peer support coalitions, and other state associations. At the conclusion of the speakers’ remarks, guests were able to continue sharing their stories in the second-floor rotunda of the Capitol. For more information on the event or to download a press release or event flyer, please visit: