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Finding Mental Health Help in Florida

Finding Mental Health Help in Florida

Finding Mental Health Help in Florida

A new law in Florida will soon permit doctors to turn away LGBTQ+ patients. The reasoning behind this outdated and harmful law cited religious and moral objections.

Governor Ron DeSantis is behind the bill, signing it as part of a so-called “medical freedom” agenda. Standing with controversial Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo, DeSantis signed the legislation with bills preventing employers from requiring vaccination status for new employees and barring specific virus research.

A significant concern for people is that companies can deny coverage to HIV-positive patients seeking PrEP. In addition, advocates are worried it will mean a loss of coverage for gender-affirming care, which various Florida lawmakers have voted to ban outright during this legislative session. 

This bill is the first of many anti-LGBTQ+ laws passed by the Florida Legislature over the last couple of months to be signed into law.

This new law will go into effect on July 1.

This article will talk about various cities in Florida, including West Palm Beach, Tampa, Tallahassee, and Pompano Beach, and where you can find help.

West Palm Beach, Florida 

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West Palm Beach is located in South Florida, with a separation between the neighboring Palm Beach area by the Lake Worth Lagoon. This city is lively, with downtown’s Clematis Street being a popular visitor attraction. You can find world-class restaurants, shops, bars, and clubs here. In addition, for anyone looking for a cultural experience, The Norton Museum of Art features American, European, and Chinese art, as well as Impressionist paintings. The 4-theater Kravis Center for the Performing Arts is a popular venue for concerts, plays, dance, and opera.


  • The city was officially incorporated on November 5, 1894.
  • West Palm Beach was actually incorporated two years before Miami.
  • In 1895, there were only 1000 residents. 
  • Florida’s first junior college, Palm Beach Jr. College, opened its doors in 1933.
  • Thousands of service members had to move through West Palm Beach’s airport during the Second World War. 


The history of West Palm Beach started more than 5,000 years ago when Native American tribes such as the Jaegas inhabited the region. Even though control of Florida shifted among many countries like Spain, England, the United States, and the Confederate States of America, the area was still undeveloped until the 20th century. 

When the 1870s and 1880s came around, non-Native American settlers had inhabited the settlement and called it “Lake Worth Country.” However, the population remained tiny until Henry Flagler arrived in the 1890s. Flagler built hotels and resorts in Palm Beach to make it a travel destination for affluent tourists who could travel there via his railroad. 

In 2019, it was reported that the population of West Palm Beach was 109,767 residents. 

LGBTQ+ Facts

Even though West Palm Beach is not as bustling as places like Miami or Orlando, it has one of the most respected LGBTQ+ communities in the country. In addition, West Palm Beach is a winter retreat for wealthy snowbirds; therefore, it has reputable hospitality and never-ending activities that always provide visitors and locals with entertainment. 

For LGBTQ+ folks who are looking to find a fun party, the Mad Hatter Lounge is the most popular LGBTQ+ bar in West Palm Beach.

In February, Lantana bar Penny’s at the Duke puts on an event called Gay Chili Cook-Off every year. During this event, local businesses and organizations compete for the title of best chili as voted by attendees. In addition to delicious eats, the event is always hosted by a drag queen and other performers. The funds raised during this contest benefit the Compass Community Center.

Also presented by Compass and coming back in March 2022, Palm Beach Pride takes place at Lake Worth Beach’s Bryant Park. During this celebration, thousands of festival-goers and many vendors attend. Also, there’s a Pride parade with celebrity guests and local talent.

There are many LGBTQ+ things to do in West Palm Beach. You can consult this list from The Palm Beaches blog for more ideas.  

Mental Health in West Palm Beach

  • In 2015, the age-adjusted suicide rate in Palm Beach County was 15.7, ranking a bit higher than the rate in Florida overall at 14.6.
  • In Palm Beach County, there are twelve primary care health professional shortage areas, including four mental health care professional shortage areas.
  • 61.4% of adults with Any Mental Illness (AMI) in Florida did not undergo treatment compared to the national average of 56.4%. 

Tampa, Florida 

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Tampa is located on Tampa Bay, along the Gulf Coast of Florida. It is a significant hub with iconic museums and other cultural sites. For example, Busch Gardens is an African-themed amusement park with rides and animal viewing. In addition, the historic Ybor City neighborhood, created by Cuban and Spanish cigar-factory workers at the end of the 20th century, is a go-to area for world-class dining and nightlife. 


  1. Tampa’s first church was in 1846.
  2. The Union forces occupied Fort Brooke in 1864. This occupation threw much of the fort’s armaments into the river, destroying a massive portion. 
  3. In the late 1860s and 1870s, Tampa went through an epidemic of yellow fever, which impacted the population size and the economy.
  4. In 1883, the fort was decommissioned with just two cannons remaining today near the University of Tampa campus.
  5. That same year, phosphate, a mineral whose purpose is to make fertilizers and other products, was discovered in the Bone Valley region.
  6. Tampa’s port ships millions of tons of phosphate each year. 


The modern history of Tampa was based on the founding of Fort Brooke in 1824. Right after, the United States took possession of Florida from Spain. The outpost then attracted a small population to the area, with the town of Tampa being incorporated in 1855.

Growth in Tampa was slow as there were poor transportation links, conflicts with the Seminole tribe, and continual outbreaks of yellow fever. Also, the Civil War and Reconstruction caused the city government to disincorporate for over ten years. 

In 1850, the city’s first official census count reported that Tampa had 974 residents. Now, there are 387,916 residents there. 

LGBTQ+ Facts

Tampa has many LGBTQ+-friendly businesses and a historic gaybourhood. In fact, the GaYBOR District is a mix of LGBTQ+-friendly companies in the Ybor City neighbourhood. This neighbourhood has a decade-long presence. 

It has been declared the “LGBTA Main Street for The West Coast of Florida” and has 12 blocks with many shops, bars and restaurants. In addition, the coalition has a significant presence in the city, with its own float and krewe during Tampa’s parade season.

There is a fun Christmas-themed, one-mile fun run and AIDS benefit via Ybor City’s holiday decorations in December. Like the other parts of Ybor City, GaYbor has exciting nightlife at Seventh Avenue spots, like Honeypot. The district has many restaurants, including Hamburger Mary’s, the loudest and proudest establishment, with drag shows, drag queen bingo, and cabarets.

Every year, Tampa hosts the Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival. This film festival is one of the country’s most prominent and longest-running independent LGBTQ+ film festivals. In addition to screening films, there are events and other queer films throughout the year. However, most of the activities occur in October, with more than 8,000 people in attendance. 

Mental Health in Tampa 

One in six people in the Tampa Bay area currently suffer from depression. In addition, one out of every 12 residents faces challenges with substance abuse disorder, according to statistics from BayCare. 

Suicide attempts in the area increased by 14 percent from 2016 to 2017, as cited by records on hospital stays and emergency room visits. In addition, overdoses went up by 25 percent over the same timeframe. 

Tallahassee, Florida  

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Tallahassee is the capital of Florida. It is known for its wide variety of museums and historical sites. Tallahassee is home to The Capitol Complex, which features the restored Historic Capitol. This site is now a museum with exhibitions on political history. In addition, the 1970s Capitol Tower has epic city views from its 22nd-floor observation deck. There are also nearby exhibits at the Museum of Florida History and the 1843 Knott House Museum.


  1. Tallahassee has the third tallest capitol building in the country. 
  2. The name Tallahassee comes from a Muskogean word meaning “Old Fields” or “Old Towns”. 
  3. Tallahassee is the hilliest spot in the state. 
  4. This city is known for its rolling red hills, with the highest peak about 200 feet above sea level.


The area of Tallahassee was first an abandoned Apalachee village. Then, in 1656, a Spanish deputy governor and crew settled in this town, naming it San Luis. It was located in west Tallahassee.

In 1823, John Lee Williams of Pensacola and Dr. William Simmons of St. Augustine selected this settlement and declared it Tallahassee, approximately midway between these two cities.

In 2019, it was recorded that the population of Tallahassee was 191,279 people. 

LGBTQ+ Facts

Tallahassee is home to thousands of progressive students at Florida State University and Florida A&M University. However, there are no LGBTQ+-designated bars in Tallahassee. This is because many gay bars that used to be open in Tallahassee closed down because of financial difficulties between 2010 and 2017. 

On the other hand, this doesn’t mean there isn’t anything for LGBTQ+ people to do in the city. For example, a big Pride celebration called Tallahassee PrideFest takes place every April. Plus, some of the city’s other bars offer LGBTQ+ exclusive nights, and many of the city’s restaurants, cafés, and shops are LGBTQ+ -friendly like All Saints Cafe, Black Dog Cafe, and the Cypress Restaurant.

Also, Tallahassee scored 84 points on the report for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) equality in America’s cities conducted by the Human Rights Campaign. This report evaluated how inclusive various cities throughout the United States are regarding LGBTQ+ rights. 

Mental Health in Tallahassee

The number of suicides occurring in Tallahassee increased by 68% from 2019 to 2020, according to the Florida Department of Health’s Bureau of Vital Statistics. 

Local mental health experts have weighed in on the issue and determined that while the pandemic may seem like the driving factor for the increase in suicides, it’s still too soon to tell why this number has increased so much.

In 2019, there were 19 suicides, and in 2020, there were 32. It should be noted that this is the first time the number of annual suicides has crossed 30 in nearly a decade’s time. In addition, the increase contradicts the trend of declining suicides statewide and nationally. For example, The Associated Press reported that the number of U.S. suicides reduced by 6% in 2020, the biggest decline in at least 40 years.

Pompano Beach, Florida 

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Pompano Beach is a city located north of Fort Lauderdale. It is well-known for its scenic beaches, marinas, offshore coral reefs, wrecks, and other dive sites. The long Pompano Beach Pier is another site that attracts visitors and stretches into the Atlantic Ocean. In addition, the 1900s Hillsboro Lighthouse guards the Hillsboro Inlet and serves as an entrance to the Intracoastal Waterway. There is also Pompano Community Park, which has tennis courts and an amphitheater.

Pompano Beach is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts since it maintains more than 50 local parks. Plus, yearly special events include a holiday boat parade in December, a seafood festival in April, and a fishing rodeo in May. 

Another major attraction is the local Pompano Golf Course. However, the area has plenty of golf courses, including the Cypress at Palm Air, The Crystal Lake Golf Course, the Oaks at Palm Aire, The Pines at Pompano, and many more.


Many refer to Pompano Beach as “The Heart of the Gold Coast.” 

This area in Florida has a 1000-foot-long municipal fishing pier that attracts many visitors. 

Playgrounds beside the beach with offshore live coral reefs make it an ideal spot for scuba divers. 


Pompano Beach gets its name from the Florida Pompano, a fish found off the Atlantic coast.

In 1896, the Pompano area had its first documented residents who were railway employees. That same year, the first train arrived in the region. Pompano also became the southernmost settlement in Palm Beach County, with the Hillsboro Lighthouse being completed on the beach.

In 1908, Pompano was incorporated in Dade County, and John R. Mizell was the city’s first mayor. Then, in 1909, Palm Beach County was officially created, with Pompano as its southernmost city. 

In 2019, the recorded population of Pompano Beach was 110,062 people. 

LGBTQ+ Facts

Like other Florida cities, Pompano Beach is extremely LGBTQ+-friendly and popular for gay vacationers who rent time shares, vacation homes, or oceanfront condos. 

Within the Greater Fort Lauderdale area itself, there are over 100 gay-owned businesses, like bars and clubs, cafes, and award-winning hotels and guest houses. Also, Pompano Beach is considered one of Florida’s many “up and coming” LGBTQ+-friendly neighborhoods. 

In addition, in the summer of 2020, a group of nearly two dozen men raised a huge rainbow flag near the Pompano Beach Pier and officially declared a section of it as Stonewall Beach. 

Mental Health in Pompano Beach 

In the Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach MSA, 349,000 people ages 12 or older were diagnosed with a substance use disorder over the past year. The corresponding rate of 7.8 percent was lower than the rates in the state of Florida and the country. For adults ages 18 or older in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach MSA, 4.9 percent (200,000 adults) had a major depressive episode over the past year. This rate was also lower than the state and country rates. 


We have several verified mental health practitioners available in Florida on our LGBTQ and ALL database. Be sure to look through our listings to find the best care possible near you. 

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