Message from the Minister of Health and the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health - Bell Let’s Talk Day


January 24, 2024 | Ottawa, ON | Health Canada

Today is Bell Let's Talk Day, an annual awareness campaign designed to help promote open conversations about mental health and well-being.

This year's theme, "Let's create real change," underscores the continued need to take action. While talking is a great starting point, for us, this initiative has always been about more than that. Together with a diversity of partners, we are making progress and improving the ways we talk about, and care for, our mental health.

There is no health without mental health, and getting treatment should be no different than it is for a physical injury or illness. This is why, the Government of Canada has made supporting the mental health and well-being of everyone in Canada a priority, including by proposing to cut GST/HST from psychotherapy and counselling for all Canadians. We want to continue to make real change.

Real change can start with just one step. We all have a role to play in helping to improve how we talk about mental health. By addressing and talking about stigma related to poor mental health, we help make it easier for someone who is struggling to ask for help. When we listen to someone in need, we help.

Tragically, an average of 12 people die by suicide every day in Canada, and more than 200 people attempt suicide. Suicide rates among men and boys and are especially concerning. Men are three times more likely to die by suicide than women. We also know that some First Nations people, Métis and Inuitcommunities have suicide rates that are  higher than the rate among non-Indigenous people. Youth and Indigenous communities can find help by reaching out to Kids Help Phone and Hope For Wellness.

Last fall, Canada took a major step forward to reach people in need. The 9-8-8: Suicide Crisis Helpline, a national three-digit number for suicide prevention support, launched on November 30, 2023. 9-8-8 provides people in Canada with free access to 24/7/365, bilingual, trauma-informed, and culturally appropriate suicide prevention support by phone and text. When you call or text 9-8-8, trained crisis responders will listen to you and provide judgment-free support with compassion. Remember, if you need support, there is hope. This is a safe space for you to talk.

Today and all year long, we encourage you to take action to improve and protect your mental health and the mental health of your loved ones. Learn more about getting help with mental health and substance use by visiting By working together and supporting each other, we can help make a positive change in our communities, schools, and workplaces.

Together, we can create real change.

The Honourable Ya'ara Saks, P.C., M.P.

The Honourable Mark Holland, P.C., M.P.


Alexander Fernandes
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ya'ara Saks
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions
and Associate Minister of Health

Christopher Aoun
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Mark Holland
Minister of Health

Media Relations
Health Canada

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