February 5th, 2016
In This Issue

Join Our Mailing List
Happy Friday Readers! 

We are excited to use this week's edition of the E-Newsletter to share with you the debut episode of our new television program Mental Health Now. The show begins airing in the Capital Region next week, but you can get the first look at it by using the link in the article.

Once again, this has been a busy week of advocacy with NAMI-NYS testifying at the budget hearing on Mental Health and participating in the Paid Family Leave advocacy day. Don't miss your opportunity to make your voice heard on mental health, register today for the 2016 NAMI-NYS Legislative Conference and Advocacy Day. Click here to register.
Watch the Debut Episode of Mental Health Now

NAMI-NYS is proud to share with you the debut episode of Mental Health Now, the television show produced by NAMI-NYS and hosted by our Public Engagement Coordinator Matthew Shapiro. The monthly program will feature leaders on mental health issues. Our first guest was Bill Dickson, Executive Director of the Capital District Psychiatric Center.

NAMI-NYS wants to thank the Town of Colonie and the William K Sanford Town Library for this opportunity to raise awareness and educate the public on mental health issues.

Click here to watch the episode.

NAMI-NYS Testifies at Joint Budget Hearing on 
Mental Hygiene

On Wednesday, February 3rd, NAMI-NYS Executive Director Wendy Burch and Government Affairs and Housing Chair Irene Turski delivered testimony before the Joint Legislative Hearings on the Executive Budget Proposal on Mental Hygiene. 

Wendy and Irene detailed NAMI-NYS's concern that people with serious and persistent mental illness are being released from psychiatric hospitals and into a system that due to under funding does not have the capacity to handle their specialized needs. They also spoke of NAMI-NYS's support of Paid Family Leave, the need to restore prescriber prevails, increased funding for initiatives to improve the criminal justice-mental illness interface, sustained funding for New York's research institutes and funding for veteran mental health services.

Click here to read NAMI-NYS's testimony.

NAMI-NYS Participates in Paid Family Leave 
Advocacy Day
NAMI-NYS's Matthew Shapiro with his advocacy group at the press conference for Paid Family Leave

On Tuesday, February 2nd, NAMI-NYS joined AARP, SEIU 1199 and Citizen Action in a broad advocacy day for Paid Family Leave and Senate bill S-3004. Family involvement in recovery has always been a top priority for NAMI-NYS and from our beginning we have been advocating to remove barriers separating families from the recovery process. Allowing families to take paid time off from work to care for a sick relative would greatly advance this important issue.
NAMI-NYS and NAMI Queens/Nassau Board member Ceceile McIntosh Green, Senator Leroy Comrie, NAMI-NYS Executive Director Wendy Burch and Public Engagement Coordinator Matthew Shapiro

As part of the day NAMI-NYS had multiple legislative meetings with New York State Senate offices, including one with S-3004 co-sponsor Senator Leroy Comrie.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie at Paid Family Leave Press Conference.

The day also featured a press conference with Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and members of the Assembly Majority calling on the Senate to pass S-3004.

Click here to read NAMI-NYS's Support Memo on S-3004.
Click here to watch a news story on Paid Family Leave Advocacy Day. 
Want to voice your opinion on Paid Family Leave? Click here to access the NAMI-NYS Advocacy Tool-Kit which has talking points and letter to the editor templates for Paid Family Leave and all the issues NAMI-NYS is working to advance.

Time to Start Planning Your 
NAMI-NYS Ribbon Campaign

Mental Health Awareness Month in May is just around the corner and the time is now to start organizing your NAMI-NYS ribbon campaign to raise awareness in your community. 

NAMI-NYS has a section of our website dedicated to the campaign with tools to help you reach out to your local municipalities and organize your campaign.

Click here to learn more.

NAMI-NYS Reminds Our Readers to Use the 
Tax Check-Off Box for Mental Health Awareness

New York State Tax Forms are out for 2015 filings and we are very pleased that there is now a box available to check off a charitable contribution for Mental Health Public Awareness. If you are one of the millions of New Yorkers impacted either directly or indirectly by mental illness, you can fight back and make a statement by checking off this box. It is up to all of us to show how important an issue this is by contributing to this cause.

Over the years millions of dollars have been raised for several worthy causes in New York's charitable check offs. It is our turn now to use the check off to add funding. You can do this whether you file with a paper form or electronically. Send a message that we as New Yorkers will not accept the stigma and discrimination of people with mental illness.

The public awareness check off is one of the initiatives that led to NAMI declaring New York as a national leader in mental health in their 2015 Legislative Report.

NAMI Columbia County Member Brian Belt
Releases New Film

Brian Belt, a member of NAMI Columbia County just released a film he made called  Costs and Enormous Humanitarian Benefits Associated with Recovery Based Mental Health. The hour and a half film details people's experience accessing mental health services in Columbia County.

Click here to watch the film, you will be asked to enter a password, please use "Lucky47." 

NAMI's Reaction to the Introduction of 
New Mental Health Bill

A new bill, The Comprehensive Behavioral Health and Recovery Act of 2016 (H.R. 4435), has been introduced by House Democrats in Congress. This bill joins the bipartisan H.R. 2646, the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act of 2015, which had a lengthy hearing in November 2015. 

NAMI is pleased to see the additional call for reform of our country's mental health system, but action needs to follow. People living with mental illness and families are tired of waiting on the sidelines.

The Comprehensive Behavioral Health and Recovery Act of 2016 includes a number of provisions designed to improve the availability of quality mental health services and supports.

Click here to learn more details of the bill and what NAMI believes the next steps must be.

NAMI Explores the Power of Empathy and 

As February is Black History Month and we recently celebrated the birthday of Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., this is a good time to examine how mental health played a role in the civil rights movement. King's nonviolent protests  for civil reform was inspired by Mahatma Gandhi. Like Gandhi, King experienced bouts of depression. Many people with depression possess a great ability to empathize with others. King's empathy gave him the understanding that non-violence was the key to success.

Click here to learn more.

New York State News
Mental Health Channel Focusses on OnTrackNY

A recent Mental Health Channel episode demonstrates the success of the OnTrackNY program which is the early-intervention program which the New York State Office of Mental Health developed from the findings of the NIMH Recovery After Initial Schizophrenic Episode (RAISE) study.

The segment tells the story of Margaret, a young woman with Schizophrenia. It details how she faces the stigma of not being accepted when she discloses her diagnosis to others. During Margaret's first bout of psychosis her parents brought her to New York Presbyterian Hospital, where they have the OnTrackNY program. The segment shows the multi-disciplinary team of clinicians who serve young people experiencing the first episodes of psychosis. It details both how the illness forced Margaret put on hold, such as work and school on hold and how the program has given her the confidence and skills to manage her disease and get her life back on track.

Click here to watch the episode.

New York Times Details How New Plan to Treat Schizophrenia Is Worth Added Cost

The New York Times examines how early intervention programs such as OnTrackNY  are a promising approach to treating early schizophrenia  and result in improvements in quality of life. They quote a study that says this investment is worth the cost. The article admits that, swaying policy makers may be challenging but asks; at what price do we put on quality of life? The two year study aimed in part to assess whether investing money in early treatment might forestall much higher costs later on.  The study concludes that this comprehensive approach including family counseling, help with jobs and school, resulted in an 13% improvement over typical care. 

Click here to read more.

These two articles demonstrate why it is so important for the New York State to Invest in our publicly funded research institutions. Click here to read NAMI-NYS's Advocacy Action sheet on this issue.  

Read the Latest Edition of NYS-OMH News

The February edition of OMH News  focuses  on ending the stigma around mental illness.

Click here  to access the edition.
National News
CNN Reports How Gun Violence is Not 
a Mental Health Issue

CNN recently detailed how despite the widespread misconception, gun violence is in fact not a mental health issue. The article cites  various epidemiologic studies over the past two decades that show that the vast majority of people with severe mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or severe depression, are never violent toward others.

People with serious mental illness are three times more likely than those who are not mentally ill to commit violent acts again themselves or others, but that is still a very small number of people, about 2.9% of people with serious mental illness within a year. And the impact on gun violence statistics is marginal, amounting to about 4% of all firearm homicides.

When talking about gun deaths from suicide, however, epidemiologists say mental illness legitimately becomes an area of concern. Suicides accounted for 61% of all firearm fatalities in the United States in 2014

Click here to read more. 

Anxiety on Campus: 6 Ways Parents Can See Past the Happy 'Mask'

Mental health issues in young adults and college students can at times be difficult to detect as this population often try to mask these issues to present at facade of normalcy. This can be very dangerous and parents and friends must be able to see past these masks in order to encourage their children to seek the help they need.

Click here to watch a recent news segment which provides tips to see past the "happy mask."

This article demonstrates why NAMI-NYS is also calling for mental health education to be incorporated into school health education plans. It is crucial that we provide our students with the tools to recognize mental health issues and know how to seek help when it is needed.  Click here to read our Advocacy Action Agenda sheet on this issue.

NIMH Update

Click here to read the latest Update from NIMH.

Transcript on Twitter Chat on Stress Management

If you missed the NIMH Twitter chat on mind and body approaches for stress management with the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)  last week, you can click here  t o view the transcript. Experts from NIMH and NCCIH discussed the latest science on using mindfulness, yoga, tai chi and other relaxation techniques.

Participate in a NIMH Research Study
Bipolar Disorder (Pediatric)

Treatment of Severe Mood Dysregulation, SMD

(Inpatient: 12- to 15 weeks) This study tests the efficacy of different treatments for decreasing irritability in children with severe mood and behavioral problems. Participants have symptoms of severe irritability and are not doing well on their current medications. The child must be currently in treatment with a physician, medically healthy and not currently hospitalized, psychotic or suicidal. The study includes day or full hospitalization to discontinue medication, followed by either methylphenidate plus citalopram, or methylphenidate plus placebo. Recruiting ages 7-17. [09-M-0034]

For more information on research conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health in Bethesda, MD click here www.nimh.nih.gov/JoinAStudy
Save the Dates

Click here to register and Click here for more info.

February 9-Join NAMI East Flatbush, NAMI April of Brooklyn and NAMI NAMI Boro Park as they co-host an advocacy meeting featuring NAMI-NYS Public Engagement Coordinator Matthew Shapiro and Board Member and NAMI Smarts Trainer Mary Lou Barry at the Boro Park Y located at 4910 14th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11219, beginning at 7pm.
February 10 - Join NAMI Westchester for their Speaker Series.  Topic: The Clozapine Clinic: A Model for addressing the medical needs of those on psychiatric medications.  Speaker: Dr. Robert Laitman, Bronx-Westchester Medical Group.  7:15 to 9pm at St. Vincent's Hospital, 275 North Street, Harrison, NY 10528.

February 11 - History of the Development of Psychiatric Treatment in Hospital Settings.  5:30pm - 7:30pm in the CDPC Family Resource Center.  As usual, there will be time for Questions and Answers as well as support services after the program.  For more information or to register contact: Frank Greco, Director of Family Services (518) 549-6816.

February 11- NAMI Rochester for Team Captain Makeup/Open Information Session.  NAMI Office from 4-7pm.  This offering is another open information session, but additionally for team captains that can't make the dinner to obtain the materials shared by local experts.  Like the first one, stop in for whatever NAMIWalks information & support you may need, or just stop in to chat and snack!

February 17- NAMI Rockland Education Meeting.  Topic: Dialectical Behavior Therapy / DBT.  7:30pm at Dr. Robert Yeager Health Center, 50 Sanatorium Road, Bldg. F, Room 119, Pomona, NY 10970.

February 17-NAMI Schnectady will partner with the family support group at Ellis Hospital to host an advocacy session featuring NAMI-NYS Public Engagement Coordinator Matthew Shapiro at Ellis Hospital located at 1101 Nott St, Schenectady, NY 12308, beginning at 6pm

February 25- Discussion about Wellness Recovery Action Plan. W.R.A.P.  5:30pm - 7:30pm in the CDPC Family Resource Center.  As usual, there will be time for Questions and Answers as well as support services after the program.  For more information or to register contact: Frank Greco, Director of Family Services (518) 549-6816.

February 25&26- Join NAMI Montgomery, Fulton & Hamilton and OMH for SSI and SSDI Benefits Training: Myths, Tips, Tricks, and How to Make it Work.  Presented By John B. Allen Jr., Special Assistant to the Commissioner, OMH.  Do you know...
- How to help someone get benefits within 90 days?
- About expedited reinvestment of benefits?
- That you can work full-time and maintain low cost, or even no-  cost, medical insurance?
- That you can ask for a waiver if Social Security mistakenly overpays you?
- That providers can get up to $25,000 per person for helping who are eligible for Ticket to Work find and keep jobs?

Even if you answered "yes" to any of these questions, you will benefit from this intensive two-day interactive training.  Find out how Social Security Work Incentives can help SSI/SSDI beneficiaries:
- Test their work and earning abilities
- Earn money for training or college
- Earn money to start a business
- Ease off cash benefits into self-sufficiency

February 25 from 9am to 5pm, and February 26 from 9am to 2pm.

NAMI MFH, Riverfront Center, Suite 2390, Amsterdam, NY.  (Lunch on your own each day) ID is required.

Please register before February 22 with: Elizabeth Patience at elizabeth.patience@omh.ny.gov or (315) 426-3942.
March 2- Women DINE For a Cause.  Women DINE for a Cause chose NAMI Rockland as the non-profit they are supporting for their March Dinner!  Place: Home of; Sonya & Milton Shapiro, 34 Scenic Drive, Suffern, NY 10901.  Hosted by Susan Hito Shapiro.  Entertainment by: Gold Recording Artist, Joe Delia.  Register online at: www.womendine.net.

May 7- NAMI Rockland is once again partnering with NAMI NYC Metro for NAMIWalks 2016.  8am Registration.  9am Walk begins.  Where; NYC- Walk over the Brooklyn Bridge.

May 7 - Join NAMI Rochester for their NAMIWalks at Village Gate.  For more information or to register call Kristina Mossgraber (585) 520-8380 or email kristina.mossgraber@namirochester.org .

May 21- Join NAMI Westchester for their NAMIWalks.  Starts at 8:30am.  Please not it on your calendar and register to walk now at www.namiwalks.org/westchester.  Create a walking team and invite co-workers and friends.  Contact friends and family to support NAMI Westchester through your participation.

June 8-  Join NAMI Mid-Hudson for their Annual Fundraising Gala 2016.  At The Grandview, 176 Rinaldi Blvd, Poughkeepsie.  5pm to 9pm.  To Honor: Andrew O'Grady, Executive Director, Mental Health America Dutchess County and Michael P Hein, Ulster County Executive.  With Special Guest Dr. Xavier Amador author of: "I'm Not Sick.  I Don't Need Help!".  For more information, please visit: www.namimidhudson.org.
Signature Programs
February 8- NAMI Family-to-Family by NAMI Rensselaer.  Starts Monday, February 8th from 6 to 8:30pm.  Samaritan Hospital, 2215 Burdett Ave., Troy, NY.  To Register:  Call Bonnie Nasca (518) 669-0456 or Pam Slotsky (518) 428-0975.
February 13- NAMI Peer-to-Peer by NAMI of Central Suffolk.  Starts Saturday February 13th from 12 to 2pm.  Federation of Organizations in Patchogue, NY.  To Register: call Sandy at (631) 793-4712 or email pnerowolfepup@aol.com
February 16- NAMI Basics by NAMI Rockland.  February 16 through March 22.  6:30 to 9pm.  St. Dominic's Home Community Waiver Program, 500 Western Highway, Blauvelt, NY.  To Register: call NAMI Rockland at (845) 359-8787 or email anne@namirockland.org.

February 19-21- NAMI Family-to-Family training to become a teacher.  NAMI Syracuse.

March 1- NAMI Peer-to-Peer by NAMI Mid-Hudson.  March 1st through May 3rd, 5:30 to 7:30pm.  MidHudson Regional Hospital, 241 North Road, Poughkeepsie.  Pre-Registration Required: Jo Ann Brown at programs@namimidhudson.org or call (845) 832-6368.

March 3-  NAMI Family-to-Family by NAMI Queens/Nassau.  March 3rd through May 19th.  7pm to 9pm.  Walk In Love For Jesus Church, 906 Newbridge Road, North Bellmore, Long Island.  To Register: email namiqn@aol.com or call (516) 326-0797 or (718) 347-7284.

March 5 - NAMI Family-to-Family by NAMI Queens/Nassau.  March 5th through June 11th.  1:30 to 4pm.  The Greater Allen AME Cathedral of New York, 110-31 Merrick Blvd, Jamaica, 11433.  To Register: email namiqn@aol.com or call (516) 326-0797 or (718) 347-7284.
March 9 - NAMI Family-to-Family by NAMI of Central Suffolk.  7-9:30pm at the VA Medical Center in Northport.  Priority seating goes to NAMI and Veteran families.  To register please contact Nancy (631) 987-3063 or nhollinshead@verizone.net.
March 10 -  NAMI Family-to-Family by NAMI Queens/Nassau.  March 10th through June 2nd.  6:30 pm to 9pm.  Unitarian Universalist Congregational At Shelter Rock, 48 Shelter Rock Road, Manhasset.  To Register: email namiqn@aol.com or call (516) 326-0797 or (718) 347-7284. 
March 12&13- NAMI Provider Education training to become a Teacher.  NAMI-NYS.
March 19&20 - NAMI In Our Own Voice training to become a Teacher.  NAMI Rochester.
March 21 - NAMI Family-to-Family by NAMI Mid-Hudson.  March 21st through June 13th, 6:30pm to 9:00pm.  MidHudson Regional Hospital, 241 North Road, Poughkeepsie, 12601.  Pre-registration Required: Jo Ann Brown at programs@namimidhudson.org or (845) 832-6368.
April 2 - NAMI Basics by NAMI Mid-Hudson.  April 2, 9 & 16.  9am to 3pm.  Arlington High School, 1157 NY-55, Lagrangeveille, 12540.  To Register: call Jo Ann Brown (845) 832-6368 or email programs@namimidhudson.org.
April 15-17 - NAMI Family-to-Family training to become a Teacher.  NAMI-NYS.
May 14&15 - NAMI Family Support Group training to become a Facilitator.  NAMI-NYS.
June 25&26 - NAMI Family Support Group training to become a Facilitator.  NAMI-NYS.
July 16&17 - In Our Own Voice Training to become a Presenter.  NAMI-NYS.
July 22-24 - NAMI Family-to-Family Training to become a Teacher.  NAMI-NYS.
August 27 - NAMI Ending the Silence training to become a Presenter.  St. Vincent's in Westchester.
August 28 - NAMI Parent & Teachers as Allies training to become a Presenter.  St. Vincent's in Westchester.
October 7-9- NAMI Family-to-Family training to become a Teacher.  NAMI-NYS.
To have your events and Signature Programs listed in the E-Newsletter contact Tammie Paradis at Tammie@naminys.org

NAMI-NYS | 99 Pine Street Suite 302| Albany, New York 12207 | (518) 462-2000