April 2010 Newsletter
From the Director
It has been an exciting month. I have had the great fortune to have had three meetings with Pam Hyde, SAMHSA Administrator, in the past 3 weeks. I am impressed with her willingness to listen and to engage consumer/survivors in dialogue and her down-to-earth manner. I told her that we have great hope in her – particularly in furthering self-determination, meaningful choices, and eliminating coercive interventions.
In other news, we have officially changed our name to the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery (NCMHR), which we believe more accurately reflects our vision, values, and emphasis on recovery. The original idea of changing our name came from our National Advisory Committee. The National Coalition’s Steering Committee decided on this name and put it out for a vote of the state and associate membership. The new name was approved by the vast majority of voting organizations. Please also make a note of our new website: www.ncmhr.org.
Also, I am delighted to announce the launching of Emotional CPR (eCPR) Certification Trainings and our NEW web site www.emotional-cpr.org where we will post upcoming trainings, FREE eCPR down-loadable videos, and other eCPR info.
Lastly, comments on the parity interim final rule are due May 3, 2010. NCMHR members will be invited to comment on our draft recommendations.
The basic premise of parity is to level the playing field – making mental healthcare equal to physical health care. That is, to eliminate the discrimination in financing/affordability and accessing mental health and substance use care. There are many complex issues but we know for certain that the next several years will bring major shifts in mental health care in America. Our advocacy voice must ensure that our rights and our shared values and principles are integrated into the new system. Click here to read the parity rules (PDF, 270KB, 43 pages).
The NCMHR Steering Committee and I look forward to continuing to work collaboratively to amplify our collective voice and shared priorities. Have a happy spring.
National Coalition News
Judi Chamberlin Honored at ACMHA Summit
ACMHA: The College for Behavioral Health Leadership awarded Judi Chamberlin the Timothy J. Coakley Behavioral Health Leadership Award, which Lauren Spiro accepted on behalf of Judi and the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery. The award recognizes “consumer and family leaders in the behavioral health field whose work is characterized by the highest degree of integrity and a passion for creative approaches for improving the lives of people with mental health problems.”
Judi Chamberlin, who passed in January 2010, was one of the country’s first and most vocal advocates for the rights of people with mental health conditions. In accepting the award, Lauren showed a short film entitled “Judi Chamberlin: Her Life, Our Movement” which the National Coalition created for this event. It brought tears to many eyes.
The NC has now officially launched a campaign to gain support for a documentary about the history of the consumer/survivor movement.
ACMHA: Healthcare Reform Domains and Key Action Steps
ACMHA, which met in Santa Fe, NM, convened the first summit of behavioral health leaders since the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Pub. L. No. 111-148). Consensus emerged, including many consumer/survivor voices, around six domains that comprise the ACMHA platform: principles and values, services and systems, consumer and family roles and impacts, financing, partnership and collaboration, and workforce. Click here to read the key action steps proposed by summit participants that the behavioral health field must immediately take to address the present and emerging opportunities offered by health care reform.
ACMHA, and many consumer/survivor leaders, will closely monitor progress made on the proposed action steps as health reform is implemented. Our involvement is needed as the future course of behavioral health is now being charted. Let us make sure the values and policy priorities of the consumer/survivor movement are front and center as we move forward. For more information on ACMHA, click here.
The Human Impact of Seclusion and Restraint
On March 31, 2010, Lauren Spiro gave a talk entitled “The Human Impact of Seclusion and Restraint” at the Alternatives to Seclusion and Restraint Recognition Program: Fostering Resilience and Promoting Recovery through Coercion-Free Care at SAMHSA, Rockville, MD. An excerpt of Lauren's talk: "...I could not understand why I was being treated so inhumanely...The internalized oppression says, 'It was not that bad.' The truth is, I almost didn’t survive.” Click here to read the full text of the talk (PDF, 19KB, 3 pages).
Funding Available - Six $20,000 grants will be awarded to consumer-run organizations.
Application Period Opens for 2010 CMHR Awards - Deadline: June 7, 2010
Each year, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) provides the Campaign for Mental Health Recovery (CMHR) State Awards, which fund selected consumer-run organizations across the United States to promote the CMHR on the State and local levels. These awards provide support for community-based efforts to promote recovery and to counter negative perceptions, attitudes, and beliefs associated with mental health problems. The comprehensive Project Guide, which fully describes the project focus, eligibility requirements, application requirements, and other important information, is available at http://www.promoteacceptance.samhsa.gov/CMHR/awards/2010awards.aspx.
Alternatives 2010 Call for Presentations Online!
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