St. Petersburg General Hospital was certainly an appropriate location for the Chamber’s latest Coffee Chat with Representative Kathleen Peters of District 69. Around two dozen Chamber members met for an informal talk with the Representative, and left both informed and optimistic.
Representative Peters focused her chat on her efforts in the Florida legislature towards mental health reform, impressing the attendees with her passion for the issue as well as the practicality and sound basis of her solutions. She spoke of Florida’s far-reaching mental health problems, including the impact they have on the justice and healthcare systems, families, and community finances. Representative Peters has been researching and developing her initiatives for the past two years, and was able to get all six bills she authored passed in the most recent legislative session.
Her reforms go to making mental health treatment more accessible, efficient, and effective. They fund Crisis Intervention Training for law enforcement, develop Marchman Act infrastructure, and call on counties to develop comprehensive care/access plans for addicts and the mentally ill.
Representative Peters was first elected to the House in 2012, having previously served as the mayor of South Pasadena. She is the current Vice Chair of the Children, Families & Seniors Subcommittee, and also serves on the subcommittees for Economic Affairs, Justice Appropriations, Transportation & Economic Development Appropriations, and Transportation & Ports. She has received numerous awards and recognitions, including the M.A. Bernstein Award for Mental Health Awareness
The next Chamber Coffee Chat is on Tuesday, July 19th with District 70 State Representative Darryl Rouson. The location is the Louise Graham Regeneration Center at 2301 3rd Ave S, St. Petersburg. Register here.