Mental health transformation bills pass through California Legislature

The California Legislature has approved two bills that aim to transform mental healthcare across the state, with residents now having the opportunity to vote to modernize California's mental health system in March 2024.

Senate Bill 326 would modernize the Mental Health Services Act, expanding services to include treatment for substance use disorder; providing resources to support housing and the mental health workforce; and continuing investments in prevention, early intervention and innovative pilot programs.

Meanwhile, Assembly Bill 531 would designate $6.38 billion to build 10,000 new treatment beds and supportive housing units to serve over 100,000 California residents. If approved by voters, this would be the single largest expansion of California's behavioral health treatment and residential settings in history.

Once signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, the two bills will appear jointly on the March 2024 ballot as Proposition 1.

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