NAMI NH Legislative Update
Week of February 22, 2021

NAMI New Hampshire is tracking the following bills that have upcoming hearings.  Members of the public can share their position and/or attend these hearings virtually using the links below.  We encourage mental health and suicide prevention advocates to make your voices heard.  It’s never been easier to do so, given the current flexibility of virtual participation.

It takes about one minute to sign in on a bill to show your support or opposition, or to request an opportunity to testify.  You will need the date and time of hearing, bill number, and committee name. You may complete the form right now or at any time, but please sign in no later than 8:00 am on the hearing day: 

For House Bills (start with HB) sign in here:
 
For Senate Bills (start with SB) sign in here:

NAMI NH will submit our official organizational position on legislation.  Please be certain to make the following selections when completing the above form(s):
- I am: Member of the Public
- I’m representing: Myself

If you would like additional information, or assistance in drafting testimony, please contact advocacy@NAMINH.org

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2:00 pm
HB 578: Relative to standards for mental health courts.
(NAMI NH SUPPORTS)
Members of the public may attend using this link: https://www.zoom.us/j/91815905671
Committee: House Judiciary Committee

NAMI NH strongly encourages mental health advocates to sign in to SUPPORT HB 578 by 8:00 am on February 23rd by visiting: http://gencourt.state.nh.us/house/committees/remotetestimony/default.aspx

HB 578 was introduced as a result of the recommendations from the Mental Health Courts Commission. This bill would task the court with developing standards for a statewide mental health court system.  NAMI NH Deputy Director Susan Stearns served on the Mental Health Courts Commission, whose final report and recommendations can be reviewed here. While HB 578 won’t necessarily establish more mental health courts immediately, it is a step forward in a longer-term strategy NAMI NH embarked on in 2019 when we brought forward and passed SB 51, which established the Commission to make recommendations on mental health courts. 

If you or a loved one have experience with a mental health court, we encourage you to share personal testimony orally during the hearing or by email in support of HB 578.  Alternately, if you feel the lack of an available mental health court has impacted you or your loved one, please also consider sharing that perspective in support of HB 578.  

Sign up to speak during the hearing: 

Email your written testimony: HouseJudiciaryCommittee@leg.state.nh.us 
  
Below are additional bills that NAMI NH is tracking which have upcoming hearings.  Learn more about these, and other 2021 bills affecting mental health and suicide prevention, by visiting https://www.naminh.org/get-involved/advocate/take-action/ or contacting advocacy@NAMINH.org.

Tuesday, February 23rd, 1:00 pm
HB 212: Relative to drug courts and alternative drug offender grant programs.
(NAMI NH SUPPORTS)
Members of the public may attend using this link: https://www.zoom.us/j/91815905671
Committee: House Judiciary Committee

Friday, February 26th, 11:00 am
HB 540: Relative to supported decision-making as an alternative to guardianship.
(NAMI NH SUPPORTS)
Members of the public may attend using this link: https://www.zoom.us/j/91679735236
Committee: House Judiciary Committee
Public Hearing & Public Comment Period on 
Proposed Acquisition of LRGHealthcare by Concord Hospital

On Tuesday, February 23rd, 4-6 pm, the Charitable Trusts Division at NH Department of Justice will host a public hearing via webinar on the proposed acquisition of LRGHealthcare by Concord Hospital.  

NAMI New Hampshire will provide input requesting a commitment that the current census of inpatient psychiatric beds across Concord Hospital, Franklin Regional Hospital, and Lakes Region General Hospital will continue to operate at no less than current capacity following an acquisition.  Additionally, NAMI NH will request confirmation that Lakes Region General Hospital and Concord Hospital will continue to support and invest in emergency psychiatric capacity and community-based mental health services.

We encourage mental health advocates to participate in the public comment process via the options below.  It is especially critical to hear from individuals willing to share personal experiences of how important the availability of inpatient psychiatric beds at Concord Hospital or Franklin Regional Hospital has been to them, or to their loved ones.  If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact advocacy@NAMINH.org.  

Who: Charitable Trusts Division at NH Department of Justice

What: Public Hearing (via Webinar) on Proposed Asset Acquisition of LRGHealthcare by Concord Hospital. 

When: Tuesday, February 23rd, 4-6 pm

Why: Following a brief presentation, there will be a period of public comment and opportunity for questions.


Comments or questions can be submitted as follows:
• In the Chat function during the webinar.
• In-person and live during the webinar by using the Raise Hand function.
• Online on or before February 22, 2021 using the following link: https://forms.gle/3yZmnToimwe11mFd6

You may also submit comments to the Director of Charitable Trusts by mail or email on or before March 5, 2021:

Director of Charitable Trusts
Department of Justice
33 Capitol Street
Concord, NH 03301