MTPR

Western Montana Mental Health Center

Paintings on display at the 'Stomp The Stigma' art show at the Western Montana Mental Health Center.
Nicky Ouellet

For Fred Waters, painting isn’t so much about crafting a perfect piece of art for others to see. Instead, painting gives him a chance to quiet the constant racket in his head and focus on one detail at a time.

"For a few of us, the painting is a way to express feelings or allow ourself to have certain feelings. Because like for me, life gets overwhelmingly scary and there’s a lot of stuff I want to numb out and don't deal with anymore," he says.

Paula Buckley swaps out signs at the former Sinopah House in Kalispell, Friday, March 30, 2018. The therapeutic girls’ group home is being turned into a home for adults with developmental disabilities.
Nicky Ouellet

Editor's Note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Sinopah House will be converted to a group home for adults with developmental disabilities. Fox Creek will serve adults with mental illness.

The only group home in the Flathead Valley that offered therapy specifically tailored to abused and traumatized girls shut its doors last Friday, the latest casualty of state-level budget cuts.

Eric Whitney

The number of people being held in institutions due to mental disorders in Missoula County has spiked by more than 30-percent in the wake of statewide budget cuts for social services.

Western Montana Mental Health Center headquarters in Missoula
Eric Whitney

A federal mediator is stepping in to help arbitrate a dispute between a new union of recently laid-off mental health care workers and their Missoula-based employer.

Today, the union and Western Montana Mental Health Center confirmed they will meet Tuesday.

Western Montana Mental Health Center headquarters in Missoula
Eric Whitney

Last week Montana Public Radio reported about coming layoffs at the state’s largest community mental healthcare provider.

Employees at Missoula-based Western Montana Mental Health told us about 50 case managers there were being laid off due to state government cutting Medicaid payments.

The organization confirmed the cuts Monday, and today we’re hearing from its CEO, Jodi Daly.

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