Advocacy is an important means of raising awareness on mental health issues and ensuring that mental health is on the national agenda of governments. Advocacy can lead to improvements in policy, legislation and service development.
Less than a month ago the world received news of the passing of award-winning actor, Robin Williams, who completed suicide after years of publicly talking about his struggles with depressive moods and substance use. With Williams’ passing, the world joined together in mourning for a public figure who was admired by many and began conversations across social media platforms about suicide prevention and the stigma associated with both suicide and mental illness.
We are halfway through May, which means we are halfway through Mental Health Month! Mental health advocates across the country have been busy advocating and working hard to raise awareness and reduce the stigma associated with mental illness.
It’s almost May. The polar vortex is merely a memory and summer is fast approaching! The change in seasons means a mental health boost for many of us and what better way to embrace our heightened spirits than to advocate for others?
The role women have played in our understanding of mental illness has evolved greatly over centuries, from the ancient Greek belief that hysteria was a symptom of a “wandering uterus” to women’s roles in developing some of the most broadly used, evidence-based treatments for mental illness in use today.
Earlier this week, Trilogy posted a New York Times opinion piece on our Facebook and Twitter feeds titled “Shameful Profiling of the Mentally Ill.” It addressed the discrimination of several individuals who, on separate occasions, were disgracefully denied entry into the United States simply because they had sought treatment for mental illness in the past.
Tags: recovery, mental illness, mental health, stigma, serious mental illness, reduce stigma, advocacy, community mental health act, Mental Health First Aid, John F. Kennedy, Patrick Kennedy, New York Times
Diana is a peer specialist who works in the Trilogy Beacon. A passionate advocate for recovery and trauma-informed care, she was recently the guest speaker at the Illinois Region 1 Integrated Behavioral Health Network Meeting where she shared her story of recovery:
Earlier this week, our CEO, John Mayes and members of our leadership team—along with more than 600 behavioral healthcare providers and advocates from across the country—stood on the steps of the U.S. Capitol Building advocating for increased funding and better access to mental health services as part of the National Council For Behavioral Health’s Hill Day 2013. While in Washington, our team discussed the importance of the Excellence in Mental Health Act with representatives from the offices of Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), U.S. Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL), U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Congressman Mike Quigley (D-IL).