JOIN THE FIGHT! TO SAVE THE ELMIRA PSYCHIATRIC CENTER
[UPDATE, December 19, 2013: Cuomo administration changes course; O'Mara praises community effort to help save local jobs, services. Read more HERE]
[UPDATE, November 15, 2013: Join us at a public rally to Save the Elmira Psychiatric Center at the Clemens Center in Elmira on Saturday, November 23, 2013. For details, CLICK HERE]
On Wednesday, July 10, 2013, the Cuomo administration announced a comprehensive, statewide Office of Mental Health (OMH) reorganization plan.
Under this plan, the administration is seeking to shut down nine psychiatric hospitals throughout New York, mostly upstate, including the Elmira Psychiatric Center (Elmira PC) next year.
On the day this plan was released, State Senator Tom O’Mara released a statement in strong opposition to the closing of the Elmira PC.
Senator O’Mara’s statement read, in part, “I’ve strongly made the case, together with many other local leaders, that the Elmira PC is an irreplaceable cornerstone of this region’s and state’s mental health system. The Elmira PC has demonstrated an undeniable record as New York State’s most cost effective, efficient, innovative, high quality and successful provider of mental health services. There simply isn’t a network of community-based organizations across this region to take the place of the Elmira PC. The Elmira PC has been an absolute lifeline of accessible, compassionate and quality care for patients and families. Its programs and services have long stood as the first responder for treatment, as well as the front line of defense against the firearms-related and other tragedies of the violent mentally ill.
“It’s tough news for patients and families, for the Elmira PC’s dedicated professionals and staff, and for Elmira and communities across our entire region. But I believe it’s the wrong decision, and the consequences are enormous. It remains impossible to justify, in my view, and I will continue to urge Governor Cuomo and his administration to reconsider the future of the Elmira PC. We’re not about to give up the fight to somehow find a way to ensure that the Elmira PC’s tradition of care, prevention and treatment for patients and families throughout our rural communities is carried on.”
Read Senator O’Mara’s full statement HERE.
Read the entire OMH reorganization plan HERE.
Psychiatric hospitals will be closed and existing services consolidated within 15 “regional centers of excellence” OMH plans to open across the state. Under the plan, Elmira PC will be merged into one regional center known as the Great Lakes RCE that will be located in Buffalo. The plan calls for no inpatient services to remain at Elmira.
Senator O’Mara is joining local leaders to continue voicing their opposition to the Cuomo administration's planned closure of the Elmira PC. You can stay updated on their efforts at www.supportepc.org.
[Watch and read more about the public hearing Senator O'Mara hosted in Elmira on Monday, October 28, 2013]
If you would like to Join the Fight! to save the Elmira PC, please sign the online petition below to help Senator O’Mara express the fundamental importance of the Elmira PC to the 11-county region it has long served with compassion, distinction and quality care.
[NOTE: If you'd like to help circulate a paper petition in support of the Elmira Psychiatric Center, CLICK HERE]
You can also share your thoughts directly with:
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo HERE; and
the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities HERE.