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Legislative District 02

Posted on: May 16, 2019

Leg. Bynoe Brings Mental Health First Aid Training to Nassau County

(MINEOLA, NY) - Over the years, we have been forced to deal with the consequences of untreated mental illness within communities across the nation, and Nassau County is no different. Legislator Bynoe has taken notice and has positioned herself as a forerunner of social transformation by introducing the Mental Health First Aid course to community stakeholders who work with the youth. 

Crossing the aisle to work with Legislator Francis Becker (Republican, District 6), Legislator Bynoe succeeded in securing necessary funding to host a series of community Mental Health First Aid Certification trainings, the first one of them to be held on December 14th. This course is designed to educate individuals and provide them with the appropriate skill set to ensure a pro-active approach to identifying and managing mental health issues.  With this new resource, we can change the perception and conversation surrounding mental health issues and how they are managed, especially in regards to our youth.

“It is my intention to work to reduce the stigma associated with mental health issues, while  properly equipping community members who routinely engage with our young people, like faith based, youth service and community organizers. The training will provide the participants with the tools to help identify and deal with those residents who are suffering, and get them the help that they need” shared Legislator Siela Bynoe. 

Originally adapted and coordinated by the National Council for Behavioral Health, the Maryland Department of Health and the Missouri Department of Mental Health in 2008, Mental Health First Aid is a program that introduces communities to common mental health challenges for youth, reviews typical adolescent development, and teaches a 5-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations. “The training is well focused and effective.  Just like CPR training, it concentrates on the  warning signs of mental health disorders and educates the participants  on how to take the appropriate steps to effectively deal with the person in need and possibly save lives” said Siela Bynoe.

On December 21st they will complete the second part of the two part course that has been offered; but Legislator Bynoe plans to continue the partnership with the County and build on its success. “What was really empowering is how quickly this course filled up.  It is proof that the void we identified was shared with local stakeholders and that we have a real community partnership in making mental health a priority here in Nassau” said Legislator Bynoe.

"The good news is this is just the beginning", said Legislator Siela Bynoe. “The idea is that this course will become part of the very fabric of the County’s public health agenda is the ultimate goal” concluded Legislator Siela Bynoe.

For more information, please contact Legislator Bynoe’s office at (516) 571-6202 or by email

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