1 in 5 young Canadians struggles with mental health. TVO Today’s In Our Heads podcast asks why.

Available now, this new podcast is produced in partnership with the Investigative Journalism Bureau and The Toronto Star.

Toronto, Ontario, CANADA


Toronto, Ontario, June 14, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Canadian youth are facing an unprecedented mental health crisis. How did we get here and what solutions are available? Premiering today via Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and elsewhere, TVO Today’s In Our Heads podcast is a six-part series that illuminates the causes, challenges and risks of ongoing systemic gaps in mental healthcare. 

“The roots of our current mental health crisis stretch beyond the pandemic, but the acute impacts of the past three years are unlike anything Canadian youth have ever experienced,” says John Ferri, VP of Current Affairs and Documentaries at TVO. “In Our Heads untangles what teenagers and young adults are facing right now. The series is compassionate, insightful and, at times, heart-rending. You need to hear this.”

With new episodes available weekly on Wednesdays, In Our Heads builds upon the Investigative Journalism Bureau’s series Generation Distress, which was published in The Toronto Star and examined mental health challenges for secondary and post-secondary students in Canada and the United States. 

The Generation Distress series found that one in five Canadian youth are part of the mental health crisis. Of the 152 young interviewees who expressed mental health struggles, 90% were suffering from anxiety, 80% were suffering from depression, 62% considered quitting school and 48% contemplated suicide. This data should alarm every Canadian and motivate action on reforms.

In Our Heads is hosted by Tiffany Lam, a journalist and podcast producer at TVO Today. Episodes feature candid conversations with youth, experts and others who have experienced the systemic gaps in mental healthcare. Through researched statistics and informed storytelling, this podcast helps build understanding about how young people are experiencing their lives today. 

  • Episode 1: What do we mean by ‘mental health crisis'? (Listen now)
  • Episode 2: The cost of success at post-secondary schools
  • Episode 3: How one hub model reimagines mental health care access
  • Episode 4: The risks of youth psychiatric medication
  • Episode 5: When your counsellor is an app
  • Episode 6: Reclaiming 'madness' and embracing neurodivergence

Listen to the series trailer and the first episode of TVO Today’s In Our Heads wherever you get podcasts. Subscribe, review and share to help others discover the series. 

Background: 

  • “‘The kids aren’t all right’: Mental health supports needed in more than 90 per cent of Ontario schools, report finds.” The Toronto Star, February 27, 2023.
  • “Half of Canadians wait up to a month for ongoing counselling services in the community, while 1 in 10 people wait about 4 months or longer.” Canadian Institute for Health Information. May 26, 2021.
  • “If current trends persist, more than 3 million Ontarians could be without a family doctor by 2025.” LifeWithoutADoctor.ca (Ontario College of Family Physicians).

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Sean Minogue, TVO
sminogue@tvo.org 

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