New York State has become the first in the nation to offer a Mental Health Public Awareness license plate.
The plate - which features a green ribbon and includes the words, “Healthy Minds, Healthy New York” – can be ordered online on the “Custom Plates” tab at dmv.ny.gov.
State Sen. Robert Ortt, R-North Tonawanda, chair of the Senate Mental Hygiene Committee, sponsored the bill.
“I’m proud to have sponsored and passed legislation creating a license plate that will help change the stigma surrounding mental illness,” said Ortt, R-North Tonawanda, chair of the Senate Mental Hygiene Committee. “Mental illness affects men and women of all social and economic backgrounds and it is crucial we inform the public about the importance of recognizing and understanding mental illness. The creation of these license plates is just one way we can help raise awareness about an issue the impacts individuals from all walks of life.”
The Mental Health Association in New York State, which encouraged creation of the new plate, also noted that the state in 2015 began to include mental health awareness as a charitable checkoff on income tax forms and in 2016 mandated mental health instruction in schools.
The initial cost for a pair of plates is $116.25.