PRESS RELEASE

City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

12/10/2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # 121020-2
Subject:
City Announces Mental Health and Substance Abuse Counseling Services for Black Residents
Contact:
City of Long Beach Joint Information Center
562.570.NEWS
jic@longbeach.gov





Long Beach, CA - The Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services (Health Department) has awarded contracts to licensed behavioral health clinicians to provide culturally affirming mental health and substance abuse counseling services to uninsured or underinsured Black residents during the pandemic.

“Black residents in Long Beach and across the country have been one of the hardest hit communities during this health and economic crisis,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “I am glad to see these additional services will be provided to better support our residents and improve the quality of life for those most in need.”

Black residents account for 12% of all Long Beach residents but represent 14% of COVID-19 hospitalizations and 15% of all COVID-19 related deaths. Higher levels of stress contribute to poor mental and physical health outcomes that exacerbate COVID-19 severity and mortality. 

In October, the City issued a request for proposals to provide culturally affirming mental health and substance abuse counseling services to uninsured or underinsured Black residents experiencing negative mental, emotional and behavioral health status.

The following agencies were awarded Black Mental Health and Substance Abuse Counseling contracts:

Clinicians from each agency will provide no-cost psychotherapy treatment to uninsured and underinsured Black residents who lack finances to cover the full cost of treatment. Each clinician must meet the following criteria:  

  • Offer treatment for persons experiencing anxiety, depression, bi-polar disorder, personality disorder, domestic violence, trauma, or substance abuse.
  • Provide culturally affirming services to 10 or more unduplicated clients.
  • Provide a series of 60-minute psychotherapy sessions (including initial assessment) per client.
  • Ensure linkage to health insurance for uninsured or underinsured clients through a (warm) hand-off via direct referral to the Health Access /Medi-Cal Outreach hotline 562.570.7979.

People may find out more about these programs by calling the City’s Resource Line at 562.570.INFO (4636), option 5. Resource Line operators are prepared to help assess eligibility when needed and provide program referrals to organizations across the city.  

These programs are made possible by Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding. The City received $40 million in CARES Act funding to support relief and community recovery and resiliency, of which the Long Beach City Council allocated $1,445,000 to non-profit community-based organizations and for-profit organizations to provide resources and services to communities impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

For the latest information on COVID-19, with details on all that the City of Long Beach is doing to keep our residents safe, visit longbeach.gov/COVID19 and follow @LongBeachCity on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 

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