May 13th, 2016
In This Issue

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The second week of Mental Health Awareness month has once again found NAMI-NYS and our affiliates engaging in activities and forming partnerships around the state to provide help, hope and awareness in their communities.

This week we are excited to share with you information about the three NAMI Walks that took place on May 7th, our participation in a CIT training, new partnerships with businesses and local governments and raising awareness of mental health in the work place. We also have info on the new NAMI PSA and New York landmarks lit green for Mental Health Awareness Month. For our readers in the Capital Region, we also want to call your attention to a proposed law that could negatively impact people with mental illness.

We want to know how you are raising awareness in your community. Please email with details and pictures about your work. This way we can feature it in the E-News and the upcoming Spring Newsletter. Showcasing your work will allow others to learn from you and that's the best way we can grow together as an organization. Together, we can create a more mentally healthy New York State but remember... 

Hope Starts With You!

New York State NAMI WALKS Season Kicks Off
With Three Successful Walks

The NAMI Walks season in New York State got off to a fantastic start on Saturday, May 7th when NAMI Walks took place in New York City, Long Island and Rochester. Thank you to everyone who donated and participated in the Walks. There is still time for you to support these walks and their affiliates by visiting the NAMI Walks section of the E-Newsletter. You can also sign up to participate in the NAMI Westchester Walks taking place May 21st and the NAMI-NYS Walks taking place September 24th.

Communities Across New York State Engage in 
NAMI-NYS Ribbon Awareness Campaign

Everyday for the past two weeks it has been incredibly inspiring to see more pictures coming into our office showing how communities throughout New York have embraced the NAMI-NYS Ribbon Awareness campaign. It's amazing that this statewide initiative began only four years ago, when one person, Sheryl Brauman, came up with a simple idea to make her community in Westchester more aware of NAMI and Mental Health issues, has blossomed into a campaign that has inspired people across the state. It demonstrates that hope certainly can and does start with you.

This week features pictures of police precincts, libraries, town parks, businesses, colleges and high schools engaging in the campaign. Click here to see all the pictures from week two. 

NAMI-NYS is tremendously grateful to all our affiliates who are working on the campaign and all the businesses, schools, medical offices, libraries and government agencies who have committed themselves to raising mental health awareness in their community. We will be highlighting the campaign  throughout  the month so keep those pictures coming. You can email all pictures to There is also still time to get involved in the campaign - you can email Alicia at the address above for more information.

NAMI-NYS Participates in Capital Region 
CIT Training

On May 13th, NAMI-NYS participated in a family/consumer panel as part of Crisis Intervention Training sponsored by Albany County. There were officers from the Albany and Watervilet Police Departments and correction and probation officers from the Albany County Jail.

NAMI-NYS's Matthew Shapiro told his personal story of having to call 911 for a family member in crisis and discussed the importance of understanding that when police intervene in a crisis situation they are encountering individuals and families at their worst, the need to talk with the families during a crisis to understand what is truly going on, the awareness specific to correction officers and the importance of working with NAMI and other advocates to best understand mental illness and generate the most positive outcomes. Matthew also discussed welcoming police and CO's at our education conference and how police precincts are participating in the Ribbon Campaign.

R&B Quality Electric Partners With NAMI-NYS 
to Go Green 

During the month of May, the Long Island company  R&B Quality Electric, will be donating up to $500 to NAMI-NYS from each sale where someone mentions Mental Health Awareness Month. We encourage all our Long Island followers to call them at (631) 447-0350 and look into going green both for solar power and mental health awareness.

All the proceeds from this will go to supporting our Signature Programs in Long Island. We are grateful to R&B Quality Electric for their generosity and for partnering with us.

NAMI NYC Metro Continues to Raise Awareness of Mental Health in the Workplace

On May 2, 2016, National Alliance on Mental Illness of New York City (NAMI-NYC Metro) and Northeast Business Group on Health (NEBGH) co-sponsored their Workplace Mental Health Summit VIII with a measurement theme. The Summit focused on how employers can quantify employees' mental health and its relationship to diminished workplace productivity, as well as evaluate interventions to track improvement. Research shows that poor mental health not only severely diminishes employee well-being and quality of life; it also decreases productivity at work.

Attended by business executives and human resource professionals from large companies, as well as nonprofit leaders and NYC Human Resources Administration officials, experts educated the Workplace Summit's fifty attendees about measurement tools and data to understand employee mental health, its impact on them and their functioning at work, in addition to enhancing employee well-being, thereby improving workplace functioning.

Wendy Brennan, Executive Director of NAMI-NYC Metro along with Laurel Pickering, President and CEO, NEBGH, wrote an article about this in the Huffington Post which you can click here to read.

Staten Island Borough President Presents Proclamation to NAMI Staten Island and Features Ribbon Campaign
in Newsletter

Staten Island Borough President James Oddo presented NAMI Staten Island President Peter Schiffman and Executive Director Linda Wilson with a proclamation acknowledging Mental Health Awareness Month and the NAMI Ribbon Awareness Campaign. The Borough President's office also featured the ribbon campaign in the Newsletter.

You can click here to read the newsletter. 

 Rockland County Partners With NAMI Rockland to 
Raise Mental Health Awareness

Last week we brought you information on the flag raising done by Rockland County. The county has continued to work with our NAMI Rockland affiliate and presented them with a proclamation. The examples of NAMI Rockland and NAMI Staten Island demonstrate the importance of NAMI-NYS affiliates partnering with their local governments. We urge all our affiliates to strive to build such relationships.

Click here to see photos and videos of the Rockland County flag raising and proclamation presentation. 

Assemblyman Phil Steck Presents at 
NAMI Schenectady Lunch Meeting

On May 6th, Assemblyman Phil Steck was the featured speaker at NAMI Schenectady's monthly lunch meeting. Assemblyman Steck, who is a co-sponsor of two the bills on NAMI-NYS's legislative priority list (Kendra's Law and Step-Therapy Regulation), discussed insurance, housing and criminal justice issues impacting people living with a mental illness,

NAMI Rensselaer Has Booth at 
Troy Farmers Market

On Saturday May 7th, NAMI Rensselaer had an information booth at the Troy Farmers Market where they distributed NAMI Awareness Ribbons and information on NAMI programs, mental health and mental illness. The affiliate plans to participate in other farmers markets and street fairs in the Capital District throughout the summer. Many businesses in Troy are involved in the Ribbon Campaign.

NAMI-NYS Partners with NYS OMH to Raise Awareness on the Empire State Concourse

Every Tuesday during the month of May, NAMI-NYS and the New York State Office of Mental Health will have tables on the Empire State Concourse with information about mental health, NAMI Signature Programs and our awareness initiatives.
NAMI Launches New Public Service Announcement
Featuring Actress/Psychologist Mayim Bialik

NAMI has released a new Stigma Free public service announcement featuring Big Bang Theory actress Mayim Bialik, who is also an accomplished psychologist. 

Next week NAMI-NYS will be sending out information on how to contact your local TV stations to ask them to run the PSA.

You can click here to watch the PSA and learn how you can participate in the Stigma Free campaign via Youtube.

A Voice at the Table: NAMI and 
Community Partnerships

In the NAMI-NYS section, we detailed how our affiliates are partnering with their local governments. In a recent article on the NAMI website, Donald Turnbaugh, who has served with the U.S. Navy, Baltimore Police Department and U.S. Customs Service as well as having 20 years of NAMI experience, including as a NAMI Family-to-Family teacher details the need to establish community partnerships.

He explains how twenty years ago, there was little constructive collaboration among mental health providers, laws enforcement agencies and advocates. Some reasons for this include mistrust, misunderstanding and misbeliefs by all parties. Since then, starting in the mid-1990s, many local mental health coalitions around the country were formed to address mutual concerns. Those collaborations, often led by NAMI, embraced the concept of community partnership.

Click here to read more.

New York State News
Niagara Falls and Peace Bridge Lit Green for
Mental Health Awareness

Last week we shared with you how New York City's Empire State Building was lit green for mental health awareness. This week we are excited to share that Upstate New York's biggest tourist attraction, the iconic Niagara Falls, along with the Peace Bridge that connects the US and Canada, have also been lit green for mental health awareness. 

Attorney General Schneiderman Offers Assistance For Individuals And Families Seeking Substance Abuse And Mental Health Treatment

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced that his office is offering assistance for individuals and families seeking substance abuse and/or mental health treatment. New York's parity law , known as Timothy's Law, was enacted in 2006 and requires that insurers provide broad based coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of mental health disorders at least equal to coverage provided for other health conditions. 

The New York Insurance Law also requires health plans to administer substance abuse treatment coverage consistent with the federal Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, which was enacted in 2008, and prohibits health plans from imposing greater financial requirements or treatment limitations on mental health or substance use disorder benefits than on medical or surgical benefits.

Click here for more information.
A Proposed Law by Albany County Feared to Have a Negative Impact for People With Mental Illness

Albany County has proposed a law aimed to prevent terrorism in air travel which may have a disastrous impact for people with a mental illness. The law would subject anyone at the Albany International Airport who walks away from the TSA screening to an aggressive interrogation by police and  stipulates a possible punishment of 1 year in jail, as well as $1,000 fine for someone who decides to not fly instead of submitting to an enhanced pat down.

The fear from the mental health community is that people with mental illness don't always do well with law enforcement, especially when you add the stress of travel, unfamiliar surroundings, and crowds. This may lead to their reluctance to go through the screening process which would lead to being detained under the law. Adding to the concern is that family members and caretakers cannot accompany the individuals during "secondary screenings" where vulnerable individuals are at especially high risk.

The Albany Times Union reports "this law could end up being a model for 14 other upstate airports to give local police the power to question and, ultimately, arrest people who walk away from checkpoints."

NAMI-NYS is still looking into this and will be sending out an Action Alert next week.

National News
Actress Kristen Bell Opens Up About Her Struggles with Anxiety and Depression

While there's still an enormous stigma  attached to talking about mental illness, celebrities like Jennifer Lawerence   and Lena Dunham  are increasingly coming forward to talk candidly about their own experiences with depression and anxiety. Recently, actor Kristen Bell joined the conversation about mental health, revealing her own lifelong struggle with depression and anxiety, as well as her family's history with the disorders.  "I also struggled a lot with anxiety and depression," Bell told interviewer Sam Jones in a clip from the web series Off Camera, adding that she takes prescription medication to alleviate her symptoms.

According to NAMI, one out of every five American adults, or 43.8 million people, deals with mental illness in a given year. Anxiety disorders are also incredibly common, with the National Institute of Mental Health estimating that nearly 40 million people in the United States grapple with an anxiety disorder. As Bell points out, anxiety is even more common among women, as women are twice as likely to be diagnosed with an anxiety disorder as men.

Click here to learn more.

4 Things Nobody Tells You About Being Discharged From a Psychiatric Hospital

Sally Buchanan-Hagen writes of her discharge from a psychiatric hospital. She was hospitalized for mania and psychosis. Of course it was a relief for her to go home, but it was also difficult re-adjusting to home life after five weeks in the hospital. She knew this from previous hospitalizations and had somewhat prepared herself, but there are some things you can't prepare for and there are some things no one warns you about when you are discharged from hospital: 1. Medication regime and sleep routine. 2. Loneliness. 3. Boredom. 4. The reality check. 5. The fear of a following episode.

Click here to read more.

NIMH Resources Now on Pinterest

Are you a Pinterest user? NIMH brochures and booklets on various mental disorders are now all pinnable to share on Pinterest! To pin, just hover your mouse over the publication image and you will see the pin button appear. Happy pinning!

NIMH Grantees Named Recipients of Prestigious Presidential Award
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) congratulates three NIMH grantees who received the 2016 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers  (PECASE). Kafui Dzirasa from Duke University, Tina Goldstein from the University of Pittsburgh, and Sachin Patel of Vanderbilt University joined scientists and engineers from across the country to meet with President Obama at the White House for the May 5th awards ceremony honoring the recipients.

Click here to


NAMI-NYS NAMIWalks-Saturday September 24th, Jennings Landing Albany. Click here for more information.

NAMI-NYC Metro NAMIWalks-May 7th at the South Street Seaport. Click here for more information

NAMI Rochester NAMIWalks-May 7th at Village Gate.  Click here for more information.

NAMI Queens/Nassau NAMIWalks- May 7th at Jones Beach. Click here for more information.

NAMI Westchester NAMIWalks- May 21st  at Rye Town Park. Click here for more information,
Save the Dates
May 16- Jacobi Medical Center presents "Preventing Teen Suicide" The panel will take place at the JMC Conference Center, Building 4, 2nd Floor from 6-8:30. Light dinner will be served. To RSVP call 718-918-3906.

May 17-The NYS Legislative Office Building  (LOB)will host a performance of a powerful play called Mariposa & the Saint in Hearing Room C. Mariposa & the Saint: From Solitary Confinement, A Play Through Letters is a play written by Julia Steele Allen and Sara (Mariposa) Fonseca over the two and a half years Mariposa spent in isolated confinement in a California women's prison. All of the text is taken directly from her letters. Mariposa was featured in a recent New Yorker article. You can also click here to watch a video.

The May 17 performance in the LOB is being presented by the Women of Color Sub-Committee of the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, & Asian Legislative Caucus, along with Assemblyman Aubry and Senator Perkins, and the Campaign for Alternatives to Isolated Confinement (CAIC). There will be a reception with refreshments at 5 pm, the 45-minute performance will start at 5:30 pm, followed by a short discussion afterward. Please find attached a flyer for the performance.  The play is free and open to the public, as well as for legislators and their staff. We would love for you to attend! And for you to help spread the word! It is really moving theatrical performance and a great opportunity for anyone to see this great play for FREE

May 18 -Senator Jesse Hamilton is sponsoring a Mental Health Awareness Month event at Kings County Hospital from 5-7pm at the D Lobby/Main Entrance. The event will be a celebration of art and culture and Senator Hamilton will use this opportunity to shine light on barriers, negative attitudes and discrimination that prevent Brooklyn residents from seeking treatment and isolating them from their communities. The art show reception will be an uplifting evening, acknowledging artists in the Behavioral Health Service in the presence of their families, loved ones and friends.
The keynote speaker will be Terrie M. Williams, President of the Stay Strong Foundation and author, "Black Pain: It Just looks Like We're Not Hurting."

May 18-NAMI Queens/Nassau will be sponsoring another FaithNet event this year topic will be:  Clergy's Role in Psychiatric Hospitals. Some of the questions that will be answered by them are:  How did you come to be a chaplain of an inpatient psychiatric hospital?  What do you feel is your most successful approach when dealing with patients that have a mental illness and their families? Can you share a story about a particularly meaningful relationship or impact you had on a psychiatric inpatient? The event will take place at Zucker Hillside Hospital's Sloman Auditorium beginning at 7:30

May 18th-NAMI Rockland presents their Mental Health Awareness Month Film Series with a showing of Infinitely Polar Bear at the New City Library beginning at 1:30pm. Click here for more information .

May 19 -Capital District Psychiatric Center Family Services Presents, "Overview of Addiction Issues with Prescribed Medication" by Daniel Woodcock, CDPC Pharmacy Manager. The presentation will take place from 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm in the CDPC Family Resource Center at 75 New Scotland Ave, Albany. For more information or to register contact: Frank Greco, Director of Family Services (518) 549-6816.

May 25 -NAMI Rockland presents their Mental Health Awareness Month Film Series with a showing of Frankie & Alice at the Finkelstein Memorial Library in Spring Valley beginning at 1:00 PM. Click here for more information.

May 31-NAMI of Sullivan County will end Mental Health Awareness Month with a bang by having Mike Veny, Founder of and a sought-after mental health stigma expert, keynote speaker and high-energy interactive drumming facilitator. Mike will give a presentation on Transforming Stigma into Strength and Drumming Up Your Feelings. The event will take place at SUNY Sullivan's Seelig Theatre located at 112 College Road, Loch Sheldrake, NY, beginning at 6:30pm. Click here for more information 

June 5- Team Daniel Running for Recovery from Mental Illness invites you to join them for: Byram Hills Running for Hope. Registration: 8 am-9 am Activity starts at 9 AM. Run the 5 K Cross Country trail with marathon great Bill Rodgers Hear from mental health advocate Hakeem Rahim, State Senator David Carlucci and Stephanie Marquesano the founder of the Harris Project. The event will also feature Rachel Laitman singing Hallelujah, music by The Lagond School of Music Band and stand-up comedy Daniel Laitman.

During the entire event the TeamDaniel, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Mental Health of America, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, and the Harris will have information tables.

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!"  Click here for more information, please visit:

June 8 -NAMI Rockland Theater Party!!! NEXT TO NORMAL The show will be at Elmwood Playhouse in Nyack. The show begins at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $35 which includes Wine and hors d'oeuvres at intermission. There will also be a Raffle! About Next to Normal-This is a profoundly moving, shape-shifting, pop-rock musical for audiences who want to feel everything in one theatrical ride. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and three TONY Awards including Best Musical Score. Click here for more information.

JUNE 14 - Brain & Behavior Research Foundation presents; Meet the Scientist:  Social Learning in Borderline Personality Disorder, presented by Sarah Kathryn Fineberg, M.D., Ph.D. Instructor, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University. Register now:  

JULY 12 - Brain & Behavior Research Foundation presents; Meet the Scientist:  Life Elevated: Examining Altitude-Related Effects on Mental illness, presented by
Perry F. Renshaw, M.D., Ph.D. Professor of Psychiatry, University of Utah School of Medicine, Medical Director, Rocky Mountain Network, Mental Illness Research, Education and Clinical Center, U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. Register now:
AUGUST 9 - Brain & Behavior Research Foundation presents; Meet the Scientist: Autism: Understanding the Causes and Developing Effective Treatments, presented by
Jacqueline N. Crawley, Ph.D. Robert E. Chason Chair in Translational Research, MIND Institute, Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of California Davis School of Medicine, Sacramento. Register now:
SEPTEMBER 13- Brain & Behavior Research Foundation presents; Meet the Scientist:  Living Well with ADHD: Scientific Guideposts to Improved Outcomes, presented by
Francisco Xavier Castellanos, M.D. Brooke and Daniel Neidich Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Professor, Department of
Neuroscience and Physiology, Professor, Department of Radiology, Dir Rsch Green Cohen Inst Prevent Sci, New York University Child Study Center. Register now:

October 7 -NAMI Rensselaer County will hold their 3rd Annual Recognition Dinner & Consumer Art Show. This year's honoree is Philip C. Nasca, PhD, Dean of SUNY School of Public Health. The event will take place from 6:30-9:00pm at Moscatiello's Italian Family Restaurant, 99 N. Greenbush Road (Rt. 4), Troy, NY

October 15The American Foundation For Suicide Prevention presents Out Of The Darkness Walk 10am, FDR Park in Yorktown.  Harbor Island Park in Mamaroneck.  They need volunteers or for more information contact Maria Idoni (914) 610-9156 or
OCTOBER 18 - Brain & Behavior Research Foundation presents; Meet the Scientist: Schizophrenia, presented by Herbert Y. Meltzer, M.D.Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and of Physiology, Professor, Department of Neuroscience and Physiology Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Register now:
NOVEMBER 8 - Brain & Behavior Research Foundation presents; Meet the Scientist: Could We Someday Prevent Schizophrenia Like We Prevent Cleft Palate? Presented by Robert R. Freedman, M.D. Professor and Chairman, Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado School of Medicine. Register now:
DECEMBER 13- Brain & Behavior Research Foundation presents; Meet the Scientist:  Neuroinflammatory Hypotheses of Depression, presented byYvette I. Sheline, M.D.
 Register now:

Signature Programs
May 3 - June 7 - NAMI Basics by NAMI of Central Suffolk.  10am to 12:30pm, Tuesdays at the Sagamore Childen's Center in Dix Hills.  For more information or to register please contact Beth (631) 697-6097 or

May 9-July 18 - NAMI Peer-to-Peer, 6:30 to 8:30pm.  At the Patterson room in Samaritan Hospital, Troy, NY.  To register call Christine Rickeman at (518) 462-2000 or (518) 506-6484, email  Or Gregory Hitchcock (518) 921-4146, email
May 14&15 - NAMI Family Support Group training to become a Facilitator.  NAMI-NYS.  Contact your local affiliate.

May 16 - NAMI Family-to-Family classes by NAMI Greene.  Twice a week for 6 weeks on Monday & Thursday nights.  Windham Hensonville United Methodist Church, Windham, NY.  6pm to 8pm.  To Register: call Jackie at (518) 734-4383.

June 2- NAMI Family-to-Family classes by NAMI Greene.  Twice a week for 6 weeks on Monday & Thursday nights.  Windham Hensonville United Methodist Church, Windham, NY.  6pm to 8pm.  To Register: call Jackie at (518) 734-4383.
June 25&26 - NAMI Family Support Group training to become a Facilitator.  NAMI-NYS.  Contact your local affiliate.
July 16&17 - In Our Own Voice Training to become a Presenter.  NAMI-NYS.  Contact your local affiliate.
July 22-24 - NAMI Family-to-Family Training to become a Teacher.  NAMI-NYS.  Contact your local affiliate.
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.

August 30 - Family-to-Family by NAMI AMICO.  Tuesdays from 6;30 to 9pm, for 12 continuous weeks.  At First Presbyterian Church, 33 Park Place, Goshen, NY 10924.  Contact Catha Weiben (845) 551-1777.
October 7-9- NAMI Family-to-Family training to become a Teacher.  NAMI-NYS.  Contact your local affiliate.
To have your events and Signature Programs listed in the E-Newsletter contact Tammie Paradis at

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