Information on the CARES Act for People with Mental Illness

Mar 27, 2020

People affected by mental health conditions face unique challenges during the COVID-19 crisis. Fortunately, the Senate and the House has passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which will give immediate help to individuals and nonprofits struggling because of this emergency. 

Provisions for People with Mental Health Conditions

The CARES Act includes resources for services and supports that benefit people with mental health conditions, including:

Mental Health Services 

$425 million for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration(SAMHSA), including:


$17.4 billion to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), including: 


$19.6 billion to the Department of Veterans Affairs, including:

Criminal Justice

$1 billion to the Department of Justice, including:  




Provisions for Nonprofit Organizations and Employees

The CARES Act includes resources for small businesses, including nonprofits like NAMI affiliates and state organizations, as well as individuals struggling with financial security. Key highlights include:

Nonprofit “Paycheck Protection” Loan Program 

Individual One-time Cash Payments 

Unemployment Benefits 

Charitable Giving Incentives

NAMI HelpLine is available M-F, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. ET. Call 800-950-6264,
text “helpline” to 62640, or chat online. In a crisis, call or text 988 (24/7).