January 30, 2018

In This Issue
Quote of the Week:

"Mental health, PTSD and trauma is so rampant in our community"- Van Jones

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This week's edition of the NAMI-NYS E-News features an announcement about the 2018 What's Great in Our State along with a call for nominations. There are also several stories about children's mental health and how hip-hop artists are addressing mental health issues and the need for therapists in schools. We also have another opportunity for our readers to make their voices heard on housing and stories relating to other issues which comprise our 2018 Action Agenda, including a guide to insurance parity.  

As always, we want to know about the work you are doing.
Please email  Matthew@NAMINYS.org with details and pictures about your work. This way we can feature it in the E-News and print Newsletter. Showcasing your work will allow others to learn from you, and that's the best way we can grow together as an organization. 

Hope Starts With You!
Don't Forget to tell New York State to Bring it Home

Preventing entry into the criminal justice system is just one of the many benefits of the availability of mental health housing. As our readers know, housing with wrap around support services is NAMI-NYS's leading legislative priority. Yesterday, we sent out an action alert telling Governor Cuomo and the legislature to make real investments for better funding for better care. Many of our readers have already participated in the campaign, but if you have yet to do so, you can click here to make your voice heard.

Click here to read our 2018 Action Sheet on Housing.
Click here to watch the episode of Mental Health Now on housing.  
We need your voice to help us tell legislators to address the gaps in the budget and pass legislation  to advance our 2018 Advocacy Agenda .

Click here to register to participate in our Legislative Advocacy Day on March 7th. 

NAMI-NYS Selected to Participate in Pilot Project for 
New CIT Advanced Training

NAMI-NYS has been selected to participate and represent the NAMI voice in a new CIT Advanced/In-Service Training created by CIT International and sponsored by Sunovion. Albany was one of four cities (along with Miami, Chicago and Columbus, OH) to be used in the pilot of this training which includes Epilepsy and advanced mental health training. NAMI-NYS will be partnering with the Albany County Department of Mental Health and the Albany Police Department (including our 2017 Criminal Justice Award winner, Lt. Willie Flack) and the Epilepsy Foundation to produce the training which will be held at the end of March.

Click here to view our 2018 Action Sheet on Criminal Justice
Click here to view the episode of Mental Health Now discussing CIT featuring Lt. Flack and Don Kamin, Director of the Institute for Police, Mental Health and Community Collaboration

Several Jurisdictions are Benefiting  from State Funding to 
Bring CIT to Their Areas 

Partners from several New York counties met in Rochester on January 25 th and 26th for the initial orientation prior to the more in depth training to be conducted in each of their districts.  Representatives from both NAMI Rochester and NAMI Buffalo were present to take part in the training.   The New York State Office of Mental Health oversees the initiative, with the expert assistance of several partners, including Dr. Don Kamin of the Institute for Police, Mental Health & Community Collaboration and Major Sam Cochran of CIT International, one of the founders of CIT.

NAMI Westchester Holds Advocacy Town Hall

On January 24th, NAMI Westchester held a well-attended advocacy town hall event. A packed house came out to hear from NAMI-NYS Associate Director, Public Affairs, Matthew Shapiro and Westchester County Mental Hygiene Commissioner Michael Orth. Matthew discussed the 2018 NAMI-NYS Action Agenda and provided insight on the Governor's budget proposal. Commissioner Orth detailed how the budget will impact services in the county. That was followed by a question and answer session and a lively discussion. Matthew also discussed the importance of making your voice heard locally and noted how fortunate the affiliate is to have such a good working relationship with Commissioner Orth. Matthew also explained how the members need to help the commissioner in advocating for local services from both the state and the county.

Nominations for the 2018 What's Great in Our State Honors 
Now Open

The 2018 What's Great in Our State: A Forum to Celebrate Children's Mental Health will be taking place on May 8th. NAMI-NYS is proud to once again serve on the steering committee which consists of the New York State Office of Mental Health and Council on Children and Families along with several non-profit organizations dedicated to mental health and children's issues. Nominations are now open to honor an individual, program, school, or organization within New York State that is making a difference in the field of children and youth mental wellness. This person or agency's efforts related to mental health should specifically be in areas impacting resilience, wellness, advocacy, treatment, or prevention.

NAMI-NYS encourages our readers to highlight what is happening in your community by making a nomination. 

Click here to read the cover letter detailing the awards and click here for a nomination form.

Click here to read our 2018 Action Agenda sheet on Children's Mental Health.

Work Requirements For Medicaid Hurt, Not Help
A recent NAMI Blog detailed how on January 12, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) approved Kentucky's Medicaid 1115 waiver, which included new work requirements. The piece explains that work requirements in Medicaid don't advance the goal of employment for many people with mental illness. 

Studies of work requirements have shown they do not lead to long-term, stable employment. Instead, work requirements increase state administrative costs and complexity. Rather than spending limited public resources on enforcing mandatory work requirements, NAMI implores states to invest in robust, evidence-based supported employment programs that many people with mental illness need to get and keep competitive employment. 

Click here to read the article. 

NAMI Featured in Washington Post Article on Therapy Animals on Commercial Airlines

The Washington Post reported how Delta Airlines is requiring increased documentation in order for an emotional support animal to accompany passengers on a plane. Beginning in March, Delta customers with emotional-support animals or psychiatric service animals must provide a letter from a doctor or mental-health professional and a signed document saying the animal is trained to behave in public.

Angela Kimball, NAMI's National Director of Advocacy and Public Policy, explains NAMI's concerns about this.  "Obtaining a letter from a mental-health professional can be expensive and time-consuming," she said adding, "Under current regulations, there's a disparate response to emotional support animals ... and we think that it's essentially a form of discrimination against a set of disabilities that are not visible. Any time you marginalize or create different conditions for a set of people, it's very disconcerting and stigmatizing."

Click here to read the full article.

New York News
Legal Action Center Produces Parity Guide

The Legal Action Center recently produced Health Insurance for Addiction & Mental Health Care: A Guide to the Federal Parity Law. The guide explains patients' and providers' rights care under this law, which is called the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, or the "federal parity law." The Guide also briefly explains some relevant New York State laws. Although written for a New York audience, much of the Guide can be used anywhere in the country.

The Guide includes:
  • A summary of the federal parity law
  • An in-depth explanation of the federal parity law for those who want more information
  • A list of "red flags," or signs that your insurer might be violating the law
  • A tool to help you determine what type of health plan you have
  • Information about some additional protections under New York State law
  • What to do if you can't get health insurance coverage for substance use or mental health care
  • Sample appeals, letters, and complaints
  • And more!
If you or a loved one is having trouble accessing health insurance coverage for addiction or mental health care, this Guide is for you! Health care providers, advocates, and lawyers should also use this Guide.

Click here to view the guide. 

Parity is a key component of accessing appropriate services and medications which is one of NAMI-NYS's 2018 Action Agenda items. Click here to view the action sheet on Access issues. 

Albany Times Union Reports on How After Long Battle, Mental Health Will be Part of New York's School Curriculum

The Albany Times Union reported on how New York is the first state to require, not just encourage, schools to teach mental health. Dustin Verga, a health teacher for the Shenendehowa school district, explains why this is so important, "I think my students can identify when they're feeling stress or anxiety or something else, but I don't think they understand how to cope with it. They don't know that, just like you might need to rest if you're sick with the flu, you might need to take care of yourself if you're not feeling right mentally."
Our colleague Glenn Liebman of the Mental Health Association of New York State, who led the advocacy for the law, is quoted throughout the article. Glenn states, "When you talk about mental health and mental illness, people are still, because of the stigma, in the closet about it. People just don't talk about it like they talk about physical illness." Glenn says about the law, "This is a real opportunity to educate youth about mental health and wellness, and to do it in a positive and comprehensive way. It's really about empowering youth."

Click here to read the article.

NYS to Host Webinar on The Federal Earned Income Tax Credit: A Work Incentive that Saves on Taxes and 
Creates Larger Refunds

The New York State Office of Mental Health has asked us to share information on a webinar happening TOMORROW at 9am on The Federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): A Work Incentive That Puts More Money in a Paycheck and Saves on Taxes. The three-hour webinar will provide an overview of EITC and detail the application of EITC rules through case examples.

Click here to learn more and register.
National News
Watch Logic Perform 1-800-273-8255 at the Grammys

Back in December, the NAMI-NYS E-News featured a CBS Sunday Morning  report on rapper Logic discussing his own battles with serious mental illness, which led to a hospitalization and his hit song 1-800-273-8255 (which is the number of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline). Click here to view the clip.  

At this past weekend's Grammy Awards, Logic performed the song  wearing a shirt with the number on the front and "You Are Not Alone" printed on the back. Logic shared the stage with suicide survivors (including Kevin Hines), family members who lost someone to suicide and those who work on the Suicide Prevention Lifeline. 

Click here to watch the  inspiring performance. 

Jay-Z says Therapists Should be in Schools
Hip-hop icon Jay-Zwas the guest on the premiere  of CNN's Van Jones Show. Among the topics discussed by the 21-time Grammy winner was mental health. Jay-Z discusses how he sees a therapist and called the stigma attached to mental health issues "ridiculous."
Host Jones remarked, "Mental health, PTSD and trauma is so rampant in our community,"  before joking that " as scared as black folks are of the cops, we're even more scared of therapists."
The rapper went on to share his beliefs that schools need more mental health support services. "I think actually it should be in our schools. Children have the most going on. Their minds aren't fully developed."
Click here to read more.

Depression in Black Adolescents Requires Different Treatment

The first two articles in this section explain how major hip-hop artists are speaking out about mental health issues. This is important because as the CNN piece with Jay-Z explains, the stigma of mental illness seems to be more intensified in the African-American community. 

A recent study detailed in Science Daily addresses how "black adolescents express depressive symptoms differently than people from other age and racial groups, requiring that clinicians take this into account when developing treatment plans."

"Adolescent depression is a dire public concern in the United States, and even greater concern among Black adolescents, where, if left untreated, can disproportionately lead to an escalation of various mental disorders, academic failure, and related issues," says Wenhua Lu, an assistant professor of childhood studies at Rutgers University-Camden.

Lu and fellow researchers Michael Lindsey of New York University, Sireen Irsheild of University of Chicago, and Von Eugene Nebbitt of Washington University examine the conceptualization of depression among Black adolescents and make recommendations for improving treatment in the study, "Psychometric Properties of the CES-D Among Black Adolescents in Public Housing."

Click here to read more. 

Mental Illnesses by the Numbers

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) has launched a redesigned Statistics section on its website that features interactive data visualization tools and sharing capabilities. The section also features improved organization, navigation, and accessibility. The goal: To help people understand the impact of mental illnesses.

"There is power in numbers," said Joshua A. Gordon, M.D., Ph.D., director of NIMH. "Mental illnesses affect tens of millions of people in the United States and across the globe each year. Each of these individuals has a singular, compelling story that conveys an understanding of the depth of suffering. Statistics build on this foundation by helping us better understand the broader scope and impact of mental illnesses on society."

Click here to read more.

Clinical Trial Recruitment

The primary purpose of this research study is to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of the oral drug AV-101 (an antagonist of the glycine receptor) versus placebo. The study aims to determine if this experimental drug has antidepressant effects and fewer side effects than other novel treatments for depression.
We are enrolling moderately depressed individuals between the ages of 18 and 65 with hard-to-treat major depressive disorder. This inpatient study lasts up to 14 weeks and procedures include a medication taper, taking the research drug, taking placebo and 4 brain imaging scans. Optional procedures include a lumbar puncture and catheter placement in the spine two times. After completing the study, participants receive short-term follow-up care at the NIH while transitioning back to a provider.
The study is conducted at theNIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland and enrolls eligible participants from across the USA. Travel arrangements are provided and costs are covered by NIMH (arrangements vary by distance). There is no cost to participate and compensation is provided.
To find out if you qualify,  send an email to moodresearch@mail.nih.gov ,
 or call 1-877-646-3644 (1-877-MIND-NIH [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

Save the Dates

Click here to register.

FEBRUARY 5- NAMI Staten Island Family-to-Family Refresher. Paulette and Keith will be teaching a Family-to-Family Refresher Course for all Family-to-Family graduates to Revisit and Review workshop handouts Reconnect with each other and meet other Family-to-Family grads. We will focus on Problem Solving and Communication skills and address additional resources such as crisis file and HIPPA. Join Paulette and Keith on Monday evening February 5th at Holy Rosary Parish 85 Jerome Ave. from 7 PM - 9:30 PM. Please contact us to register, as always, no charge. 

FEBRUARY 8- Capital District Psychiatric Center Family Services Presents: "An Overview of Albany County Department of Mental Health" presented by Cindy Hoffman, Associate Director of Clinical Operations, Ramona Bartholomew, Coordinator of the Community Mental Health Criminal Justice Unit/AOT and Tyleia Harrell Behavioral Systems Manager. 
Thursday February 8th, 5:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.at the CDPC Family Resource Center 75 New Scotland Ave., Albany NY. To register contact Frank Greco at (518)549-6816. 

February 15-NAMI Schenectady will host a lunch meeting discussing advocacy issues. NAMI-NYS's Matthew Shapiro will be discussing the 2018 NAMI-NYS Advocacy Action Agenda. The event will be held at the Swanker Room of the Schenectady Public Library, Central Library, located at  99 Clinton St, Schenectady, NY 12305. Lunch will be served.

February 15- Capital District Psychiatric Center Family Services Presents: NAMI-NYS's Matthew Shapiro, who will be speaking about advocacy issues, ABLE Accounts and Paid Family Leave. This will take place beginning  at 5pm  at the CDPC Family Resource Center 75 New Scotland Ave., Albany NY. To register contact Frank Greco at (518)549-6816. 

February 9th -MHA of Fulton and Montgomery Counties will be hosting Fun Fever-A Night of Stand Up Comedy, to benefit their new support group for families who have lost a loved one to opiates. The event will take place at the Country Club of Amsterdam, 130 Guy Park Ave. Amsterdam.

Click here for more information.

March 13-CAIC Advocacy Day 2018
On any given day, as many as 4,000 people are locked in isolated confinement in New York's prisons and jails. This practice is ineffective, unsafe, and inhumane. It causes people detained in terrible conditions to deteriorate psychologically, physically, and also harms their families and communities. On March 13th 2018, people will come together from across the state in Albany to demand an end to this torture! Meet with legislators, learn, and rally to get the Humane Alternatives for Long-Term (HALT) Solitary Confinement Act [A. 3080/ S. 4784] passed.

April 20th- NAMI-NYS Young Adult Network member Olivia Case will be hosting a screening of Suicide The Ripple Effect at the Regal Theatre in Victor, NY. The film chronicles Kevin Hines, who at age 19 attempted to take his life by jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge. Seventeen years later, he still struggles with many of the same symptoms that led him to attempt to take his life, but he is on a mission to use his story to help others stay alive. The screening will benefit NAMI-NYS

Click here to learn more and register. 

Signature Programs

MARCH 1- Nami Queens Nassau Family-to- Family. Thursdays March 1-May 17 2018, 7:00 pm -9:30 pm at the Walk in Love for Jesus Church, 906 Newbridge Rd, North Bellmore NY 11710. To register: Please contact NAMI Queens Nassau at (516) 326-0797 or ( 718) 437-7284 or www.office@namiqn.org, or www.Namiqn.org, or www.facebook.com/namiqn. Co-leader Carol Ann Viccora ( 516) 221-6168 Elizabeth Janow.

MARCH 6- NAMI Queens Nassau Family-to-Family. Tuesdays March 6- May 23 2018, 4:00 p.m.-6:30 p.m. atThe LaGuardia Community College, ECLC 31-10, Room MB09, Thomson Ave.  LIC, NY 11101.To register: Please contact NAMI Queens Nassau at (516) 326-0797 or (718) 347-7284 or office@namiqn.org. or www.namiqn.org or ww.facebook.com/namiqn Co-Leaders: Sonya Evariste (718) 482-5217John Johnson.

MARCH 8-NAMI Rockland Family-to-Family. Thursdays, March 8, 2018 - May 24, 2018, 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM. Location: NAMI Rockland Rockland Psychiatric Center, 140 Old Orangeburg Road, Bldg. #57, 1st Floor Meeting Room, Orangeburg, NY 10962.Co-Teachers: Chris Vanasse & Marlene Becker. To register call NAMI Rockland at (845) 359-8787 or email: familysupport@namirockland.org

MARCH 17- Nami Queens Nassau Family-to -Family. Saturdays March 17 -June 2, 2018,1:00 -3:30 pm at The Greater Springfield Community Church, 177-06 129th Ave.  Jamaica, NY 11434 To register please contact NAMI Queens  Nassau at (516) 326-0797 or ( 718) 437-7284 or www.office@namiqn.org, or www.Namiqn.org, or www.facebook.com/namiqn, Co-leader Susan Gambler  (718) 297-0024 Sharon Ecke.

March 19- Nami Queens Nassau Family-to-Nassau. Mondays March 19-June 18, 2018, 6:30 pm -9:00 pm at Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock 48 Shelter Rock Road,Manhasset, NY 11030. To register: Please contact NAMI Queens Nassau at (516) 326-0797 or (718) 347-7284 or www.office@namiqn.org. or www.namiqn.org or www.facebook.com/namiqn. Co-Leaders:Ellen Ritz RN (516) 330-9778 or el.ritz@yahoo.com.

APRIL 9- NAMI Staten Island Family-to-Family. Mondays April 9th -June 25 from 7:00p.m. -9:30p.m. at the Holy Rosary Parish, 85 Jerome Ave., Staten Island, New York 10305.   Paulette and Keith will be teaching. Please contact us to register(718)477-1700.
Please contact your local affiliate program le aders for more information and how to enroll.
NAMI Family-to-Family
April 6th -8th
Location: NAMI-NYS Office
NAMI Homefront
April 20th -22nd
 Location: NAMI-NYS Office
NAMI Peer-to-Peer
June 8th-10th
Location: NAMI-NYS Office

NAMI-NYS | 99 Pine Street Suite 105| Albany, New York 12207 | (518) 462-2000