moved for leave to introduce Bill C-265, An Act respecting the development of a national perinatal mental health strategy.
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to introduce the national perinatal mental health strategy. I would like to thank the hon. member for Edmonton Strathcona for seconding this legislation and for her tireless advocacy in support of perinatal mental health.
Perinatal mental illness is a critical issue affecting nearly one in four Canadian families. However, programs and policies across Canada have not kept up with best practices, research or the overarching science. The services currently available to people experiencing a perinatal mental illness are largely inadequate.
This legislation would require the Minister of Health to address this by developing a national strategy to support perinatal mental health across Canada. The strategy includes measures to provide universal access to perinatal mental health screening and effective treatment services, combat stigma, promote awareness, improve training, support research and address the social determinants of perinatal mental health.
I call on all parliamentarians to help women, parents and their families by supporting this vital and overdue initiative.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)