MAY  2017

   As of MAY 16, 2017 



From the desk of Jackie Lane, Executive Director  NAMI CC&I 

Connecting People and Services
NAMI CC&I's mission is to EDUCATE, SUPPORT and ADVOCATE for people with mental illness and their families and friends. During the month of May, the SUPPORT piece of our mission has really come to the forefront. Support calls from individuals and families with ongoing and complicated problems, problems in getting desperately needed help, are rapidly increasing. Jud Phelps, our Director of Client Services, takes the primary responsibility of these calls, but all of us have to pitch in and have learned much about navigating a complex and broken system when it comes to finding solutions for those with mental health issues. This learning curve has included gaining experience and knowledge about working with Bay Cove/Boston Medical Center and the new emergency system.
Although the privatization of emergency services has required a re-education process for the police and the community as well as our staff, we feel that once Bay Cove is fully staffed and we are all on the same page, emergency services will be improved and more accessible. We will continue to make it a NAMI CC&I priority to bring parties together to make the system work. We all know that the Cape is a difficult area with huge seasonal shifts that add to the challenge.
We will continue to arrange meetings between the police departments and hospital personnel to try to facilitate the process of hospital admission. We will also be conducting our second CCIT (Community Crisis Intervention Team) training in the late fall of this year. It is our hope to be a part of the development of an educated and caring community that addresses the needs of those with mental health issues.
Please review the article above on the Bay Cove emergency services and how they are designed to work. Also feel free to call on us with questions and for assistance.
And lastly, we would like to thank all our supporters who have made the continued growth of our support services possible with their generous donations and their belief in us as an organization.


From the desk of Mary Zdanowicz, Esq.
               Recently, a mental health provider informed me that the organization's policy prevents employees from testifying in civil commitment proceedings because they must advocate for the "least restrictive setting possible for their clients." But the "least restrictive setting" principle includes the caveat that it must be "most appropriate to the needs of the individual." Sometimes the most appropriate setting may be hospitalization.
               This is not just my opinion. It is based upon the United States Supreme Court decision in the Olmstead case:
               In 1990, Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) with the intent to provide a clear and comprehensive national mandate to eliminate discrimination against individuals with physical and mental disabilities.  
               A cornerstone of the ADA is the "integration mandate," which requires states provide services to people with disabilities in the "most integrated setting appropriate to the needs of qualified individuals with disabilities."
               The United States Supreme Court interpreted the "integration mandate," as it applies to individuals with serious mental illnesses, in the case named Olmstead v. L.C. Unfortunately, the way the case has been interpreted in the mental health community is largely inconsistent with the Supreme Court decision, which reads in part:

       "We emphasize that nothing in the ADA or its implementing regulations             condones termination of institutional settings for persons unable to                 handle or benefit from community settings."
        "It would be unreasonable, it would be a tragic event, then, were the                 Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) to be interpreted so that            States had some incentive, for fear of litigation, to drive those in need              of medical care and treatment out of appropriate care and into                          settings with too little assistance and supervision."

That is, the Court recognized that sometimes hospitalization is the most appropriate setting.
The Supreme Court concluded in Olmstead:
 "Unjustified isolation, we hold, is properly regarded as discrimination based on disability." 
 NAMI Cape Cod & The Islands frequently receives calls from families who are struggling to find help for a relative who, as a consequence of untreated mental illness, is living isolated and alone:
  • An adult child living in the basement, who has no interaction with the    community and refuses to leave.
  • An individual living alone, who never leaves his apartment and refuses  help from mental health providers.
  • An inmate in jail, whose only crime is being mentally ill.
  • A homeless person caught in the revolving door of the hospital  emergency department.
               There is no justification for such isolation, particularly if the individual would benefit from treatment that would allow him to be integrated in society.  In such cases, hospitalization may be the   "least restrictive setting" that is "most appropriate to the needs of the individual."  
               Olmstead stands for the principle that isolation is a form of discrimination for people with disabilities. For those who are unable to recognize that they need treatment, isolation cannot be justified as the least restrictive setting.
President's Budget
On May 23, President Donald Trump released his proposed 2018 federal budget. The budget summary includes this statement:
"Invests in mental health activities that are awarded to high-performing entities and focus on high priority areas, such as suicide prevention, serious mental illness, and children's mental health."
However, as the NAMI summary below demonstrates, this statement is    unfounded.  In fact, 
Massachusetts would lose $2 million (20%) of funding under the budget for mental health block grant, which supports community-based mental health services for children with serious emotional disturbances and adults with serious mental illness.
NAMI Summary
The President's Budget slashes:
  • Over $600 billion from Medicaid over 10 years
  • $356 million from NIMH research in FY 2018
  • Nearly $400 million from SAMHSA, including $116 million from the MH  block grant
  • Eliminates funding for new Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing  vouchers for homeless veterans and $25 million to Section 811  housing
  • Strips millions from the Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act (MIOTCRA) and other criminal justice/mental health  grants

If you would like to join the Advocacy Network, send an email to
or call 774-207-0822.

Meet Our Summer Intern...

A warm welcome to Camilla Luppi, part-time summer intern for NAMI CC&I.
Camilla will be working on the Depression and Diabetes part of the newly developed Diabetes Research Center at the YMCA sponsored by Roger Ludwig of the Weny Charitable Trust.  She will also help identify and set up focus groups for input into the Strategic Plan update for NAMI CC&I as well as help us to make inroads into the significant Brazilian population on Cape Cod.

Camilla was born in Brazil but has spent most of her life in Centerville on Cape Cod.  She is currently a senior at Roger Williams University with a major in psychology.

We are fortunate to have Camilla and her bilingual skills with us for twelve weeks.

"You Are Not Alone" 
Mental Health Primer 
is Coming...

NAMI CC&I is producing a concise, user-friendly, free 60-page booklet containing 10 chapters on the most common issues facing families, friends and caregivers who are dealing with a loved one with a mental illness including:  what to do in a crisis, how to deal with the police, what happens when you go to the hospital, myths of mental illness, medication and treatment options, how to apply for DMH services, how to navigate the legal system and much more.  It will also have an up-to-date Resource List of inpatient and outpatient resources on Cape Cod.  The lack of this kind of written information was seen as a crucial missing piece by many mental healthcare professionals as well as members of our classes and support groups.  The goal of the Primer is to help allay fears, foster understanding and provide concrete information and education to those who need it so that they will be better able to deal with and help their loved one.

We are grateful to grants from Cape Cod Healthcare, The Edward Bangs Kelley & Elza Kelley Foundation and The Cape Cod Five Charitable Foundation to cover printing costs.

We expect to have the Primer available in July 2017,
Monthly Book Review

No One Cares About Crazy People
by Ron Powers
As a pediatrician I had little involvement with patients with schizophrenia. Much of what I knew about it was based on what I learned in medical school.  I've been looking to learn more, and thus when I heard about this newly published book, I got a copy right away.  This is a timely book about the history of mental health care over the past two centuries, as well as, a moving description of the family tragedy when schizophrenia strikes.
        Throughout this book, Powers weaves the story of his and his wife's own family.  Both their children were diagnosed with schizophrenia.  Their youngest, Kevin, committed suicide just shy of his 21st birthday. The oldest, Dean, is 35 and lives near his parents in Vermont. Much of the book describes the deeply moving story of the two boys' lives, the development of their illness and its wrenching effects on the family.  Some parts were very sad and unfortunately an experience shared by many families.
        As a result of their experience, the author decided to write this book and not only share their story but also look at the history of mental health care in America.  One chapter looks at the evolving understanding of schizophrenia.  Over the last thirty years with the development of more sophisticated neuroscience techniques, there is a better understanding of the biology of the disease.  Much still needs to be learned.  Many now feel that a key aspect of schizophrenia deals with the exaggerated "pruning" of synapses (connections) between nerve cells in the brain.  This is a normal process in brain development during adolescence.  Why this exaggerated response occurs is unclear.  Genetics plays a role but also environmental influences.
        A good part of the book looks at the significant changes in mental health services in the mid twentieth century.  These changes then led to the totally inadequate system of care that many families have to face.  The biggest change was deinstitutionalizaton.  A movement of patients out of asylums and into the community that Powers describes as "the road to hell which was thoroughly repaved with good intentions."  The result has left many chronically ill patients homeless or imprisoned. 
        Powers also touches on the history of the eugenics movement, the antipsychiatry movement, and the not always ethical role of the  large pharmaceutical industry.  He also discusses the continuing research linking marijuana and schizophrenia.  Is this a description of self-medicating the early symptoms of disease or is there a causative effect?  Many feel that there is a causative link.
        Powers ends on a more positive note though he is not sure if our country has the will to make modern treatment based on research driven "best practices" a reality.  He writes about the importance of early intervention and describes the move toward "psychosocial rehabilitation" for patients with schizophrenia.  This combines counseling, social and community support and proper medication. It is clear that money would be better spent on these services than the money already spent on things like incarceration.
Written by Dr. George Vitek, retired pediatrician who practiced for 28 years in Wilbraham, MA.  Educated at MIT and the Mount Sinai School of Medicine.  Trained in pediatrics at Strong Memorial Hospital at the University of Rochester.  Married father of four and grandfather of 8 and 1/2.                                                                                  
Ruth Blount
NAMI on Nantucket Program Coordinator

Nantucket's pace of life picks up dramatically in May.  Not only is spring in the air (finally!), but roads are being repaired, ferries and shuttle buses increase their services,  businesses and restaurants open, and college students tromp the streets looking for work.  Summer on Nantucket is different than any other time of year.  Vacationers come to relieve their stress... local people must cope with additional stress...  NAMI on Nantucket continues to work and grow, but a little more behind-the-scenes this time of year. 
  • Continued preparation for the David Glidden Memorial Travel Fund...  the seed money has been donated, thanks to the NI Resorts Charity luncheon and NAMI CC&I, although more will need to be raised before launching.  Details are being fine-tuned.
  • EMERGENCY number for Crisis Calls on Nantucket is 877-784-6273 (unless the crisis necessitates calling 911).  There will be 24/7 coverage by clinicians, who will instruct where to go or what to do.  Gosnold is  the local organization designated by the new Boston Medical Center Emergency Services Program to respond to crisis situations on Nantucket.
  • DRAGONFLY EMOTIONAL WELLNESS GROUP - starting July 10th, from 6:30 to 8:00 pm, at the UU Meeting House... call Ruth at NAMI on Nantucket for more details (508-221-6202
Dragonfly is a peer-driven group for adults facing all levels of behavioral health and recovery challenges.  It is a safe, confidential, and free place to build community, learn coping skills, and share interests.  The group will meet twice monthly, with one discussion meeting and one activity meeting.   Activities may include yoga, meditation, film discussions, outdoor activities, art, and story-telling.  The participants will direct the activities, and the therapists helping in an advisory capacity are:   Richard Ross, M.ED., LMFT, LADC and Christina Polachi, LCSW, MS.   Please help us spread the word to anyone who may be interested in attending this group!

 NAMI in the Community
Volunteer & Beer
On April 27th Arlene Hoxie and Kim Lemmon participated in an event at Cape Cod Beer for the Barnstable Bar Associations Young Lawyers Division.  The event was attended by several non profit organizations on Cape Cod for attorneys to learn about volunteer options.  We are hoping some of these lawyers will volunteer to help NAMI families.
Quality of Life Expo
On Saturday, May 6th, Richard and Scotti Finnegan represented NAMI Cape & Islands at the Quality of Life Expo at Nauset Middle School in Orleans.  The event was organized by the Orleans Citizen Forum to introduce participants to representatives from over 50 non profit organizations including library and educational offerings, musical groups & local theatres, culture & nature organizations as well as organizations providing human services and programs.  There were opportunities to express interest in supporting these organizations, inquire aout volunteering and learn how to access the programs & services they provide.  Thank you to the Finnegan's for managing our table

NAMI CC&I on Cape Media
Jackie Lane, Jud Phelps and Kim Lemmon appeared on Cape Media to discuss NAMI Cape Cod & The Islands
To access the play schedule for your program please go to, go to Watch>Video on Demand and search Profile Nami.  Click on the icon to see the future play dates and/or watch on line.


Peer Services

The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance of Cape Cod (DBSA-CC)
meets every Wednesday from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm 
at the Cape Cod Medical Center, 40 Quinlan Way, Hyannis
(across the parking lot from Cape Psych Center) 
Enter at the white portico and take the elevator to the conference room in the basement

DBSA-CC is a non-profit, self help organization run by and for people with bipolar and depressive illness.  Family and friends are also welcome.  There are no membership fees.  We come together to share support and information with other members in similar situations.

For further information, contact Lois at 508-681-8598 
or Paul at 508-221-5174 or email

Dance In The Rain Presents
Building Wholeness Workshop 
Beginning June 15, 2017 9:30am - 12:30pm. A Program Of Healing and Moving Forward in Life 

5 session workshop Thursday June 15, Friday June 16, Monday June 19, Tuesday June 20 and Wednesday June 21, 2017

This program is designed to inspire one to make conscious and deliberate decisions to initiate change and bring about harmony and wholeness into one's life

The strength of this program is peer engagement. As we work through each worksheet each person's personal input deepens everyone's understanding of every building block. The dialogue that goes on surrounding each question is the foundation and strength of this program. 
Developed by Mary E Munsell (c) 2014
Consulting psychiatrist Julie Callanan MD, PHD
Workshop limited to 6-8 participants
call or text 508-364-4045 to register.

   Transportation Services....

  The Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority provides a daily general public demand service called Dial-A-Ride Transportation (DART) that is a door-to-door ride by appointment transportation service.  It is available to all 15 Cape towns, runs from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm on weekdays and more limited hours on weekends.  It is easy to access and use.  

For more information, call them at 800-352-7155 or visit their website at:

Mark Your Calendars: 


              Tuesday, June 13
                     7-8  PM (ET)  
Hoarding Task Force
Meeting:   Thursday, June 1, 2017   9:30 - 11:00 am
                 Dennis Police Station
                 90 Bob Crowell Road, South Dennis
    Anyone interested in this topic is welcome to attend

NAMI membership makes your voice stronger
Effective July 2017, a new membership category as been added:  The new dues will be:
               Household:              $60
               Regular Individual:  $40
               Open Door:               $5

Join now and avoid the increase for the year!

Family to Family 
There will be a summer 12-week Family-to-Family program in the upper Cape area.
If you or anyone you know is interested in taking this course, please call or email 
Kim Lemmon at 508-778-4277 or

Siobhan Leigh Kinlin Memorial Golf Tournament- September 11, 2017  
This event raises the money to support all of our educational programs each year.  Please consider helping us prepare for the auction.  All you will need to do is ask merchants to donate items or services that will be part of the auction baskets.  Donations are tax deductible and support the mission of NAMI Cape & Islands to educate, support and advocate for our citizens coping with the challenges mental health issues have on our families.  If you are able to help prepare for the auction, please call the office at 508-778-4277 and we will send you the tax donation forms to give to supporting merchants.  

 NAMI National Convention, Washington D.C.  June 25- July 1

  Lawyer For A Day--Free Legal Advice

Held daily at the Barnstable Probate Court.  It is advisable to arrive promptly when it opens at 9:00 am as it is first come, first served and fills up quickly.
I nclusions in the Newsletter
We have recently been asked for last minute inclusions of events in our newsletter.  We have instituted a new policy:  It is at the discretion of the Executive Director to determine whether content being submitted for distribution to the membership is aligned with our mission.  If the content is determined to be appropriate, it may be included in the monthly e-newsletter if it is submitted prior to the first of the month.


 Every dollar you give to NAMI CC&I goes to help support, educate and advocate for the residents of Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard.  

AmazonSmile is a simple way to give when you are shopping on Amazon

Amazon donates 0.5% of your eligible purchases. 
It's so easy, you can still use your Amazon Prime and you still collect points.  All you need to do is:  When you are going to make a purchase on Amazon, first enter
in your internet browser. On your first visit to AmazonSmile, you will be prompted to select a charitable organization .  
Select NAMI Cape Cod Inc.
Thank You!