Quote of the Week:
"Find things beautiful as much as you can, most people find too little beautiful."
-Vincent Van Gough
This week's edition recounts another interesting week in Washington D.C as Dr. Elinore F. McCance-Katz, was confirmed as the Department of Health and Human Service's first Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Abuse, and this issue details both her confirmation hearing and NAMI's positive response to her confirmation. In the Capitol, reverberations are still being felt from both the healthcare vote and now former White House Communication Director's Anthony Scaramucci stigma promoting rant, and this issue as the latest on both.
Closer to home, just yesterday NYS Senate Leader John Flanagan announced that he sought treatment for alcohol abuse. We applaud Senator Flanagan for addressing his issues and sharing his struggle publicly.
We also want to remind our readers that we are just six weeks away from our NAMIWalks NYS. Click here to signup to participate, become a virtual walker or make a donation. Thank you in advance for your support. Finally, we want to direct your attention to our new quote of the week section.
As always, we want to know about the work you are doing. Please email
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.
Nominate Someone for a 2017 NAMI-NYS Award
Nominations are now open for the 2017 NAMI-NYS Awards, which will be presented at our 2017 Education Conference. You can submit nominations for the following categories:
The Muriel Shepherd Award-Named in honor of our founding president, the Muriel Shepherd award is given to an individual who has demonstrated the ability to project NAMINYS's advocacy voice along with raising awareness of mental health issues in the community.
The Max Gabriel Award-given to an individual who has made significant contributions towards addressing mental illness in veterans and service members and promoting their treatment and recovery.
Affiliate of the Year Award-given to an affiliate that has demonstrated an exceptional ability to offer signature programs, raise awareness of mental health issues, and offer diverse programs
Small Affiliate of the Year Award-given to an affiliate with less than 75 members that has demonstrated an exceptional ability to offer signature programs, raise awareness of mental health issues and offer diverse programs, as well as set the example of how to grow an affiliate's membership.
Signature Program Award-given to an individual who has done exemplary work in delivering NAMI Signature Program.
Multicultural Award-given to an individual or program promoting and providing cross cultural services to mentally ill people and their families.
Young Leader Award-given to an individual (ages 18-25) who has done an exceptional job in raising awareness of mental health issues among their peers and in their community.
As we mentioned last week, scholarship applications are now available for the
. You can
to obtain an application.
PLEASE NOTE: A submitted application does not guarantee a registration.
Registration is also currently open. You can click here to register or click here to obtain a registration sheet which can be mailed in.
NAMI-NYS Member Zak Sandler
to Produce a Show in NYC:
"A BIT TOO MUCH ABOUT ME"
Sandler, a member of the NAMI-NYC Young Professionals Advisory Board, will be producing a show A Bit Too Much About Me, that he wrote and stars in. The show explores different aspects of his bipolar disorder.
From the piano, Zak narrates his experience with bipolar as it progresses from out-of-control and chaotic, to in-control and harmonious, while he strives to navigate his relationships and his writing career. Joining Zak is a group of actors who play younger Zak, his exes, and the parts of his brain that come out during his mental episodes.
The show will take place on Friday, September 15th at 7pm at the Triad Theater, located at 158 W. 72nd Street in New York City. Tickets are $25 or $40 for Premium and are on sale now. Click here to learn more about the show.
Zak will also be participating in a panel and using the creativity and artistic expression to advance recovery at the 2017 NAMI-NYS Education Conference.
NAMI CEO Reflects on Mental Health Stigma and the Week Washington Erupted
Last week's E-News detailed former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci calling since departed chief of staff Reince Priebus a 'paranoid schizophrenic' and how that perpetuates stigma. It is important to note that in a press briefing it was said President Trump felt Mr. Scaramucci's remarks in his obscenity laced tirade were inappropriate, but the White House has yet to apologize for them as a whole or the schizophrenia remark in particular.
NAMI CEO Mary Giliberti reflected on the week 'Washington erupted.' She also explained that less than 48 hours after Mr. Scaramucci's quote became news, a syndicated Washington Post columnist fed the flames by asking satirically, "What do we do if the President is really crazy?" The column was peppered with slang such as "nutter," "barking mad," "mad as a March hare," "off his rocker" and "a few fries short of a Happy Meal."
As Mary points out "Stigma is non-partisan. Democrats and Republicans alike perpetuate it. During the 2016 Democratic primaries Senator Bernie Sanders joked: 'When you watch these Republican debates, you know why we need to invest a lot in mental health.' It was the type of joke that both used stigma for a laugh and trivialized serious illnesses like schizophrenia or bipolar disorder."
NAMI Ask The Doctor: "The Opioid Epidemic"
with Dr. Suzanne Vogel-Scibilia
How have we gotten to the point where, in many parts of the country, fatal overdoses from narcotics are three times the rate of suicides? On August 10, at 5 p.m. EST, NAMI's Ask the Doctor Webinar will explore this question and many more, as it will take an in-depth look at America's opioid epidemic with Dr. Suzanne Vogel-Scibilia. Many of our readers will remember Dr. Vogel-Scibilia from when she was the keynote speaker at the 2012 NAMI-NYS Education Conference.
to learn more about the Ask the Dr. webinar and register.
Senate Leader Flanagan Acknowledges Struggle with Alcohol Addiction
On Sunday, State Senate Republican Majority leader John J. Flanagan revealed in a statement that he had recently completed treatment for an alcohol problem. In the statement, Leader Flanagan acknowledged that the alcohol problem was a way of self-medicating. "Recently, I recognized that alcohol was becoming a crutch to deal with pressure I was under related to my responsibilities as Majority Leader of the New York State Senate," Flanagan said in the statement. "Therefore, I proactively took control of the situation and sought immediate help so I could overcome it and move forward."
In Buffalo, Children Wounds No One Sees
The Buffalo News recently explored trauma and the mental health impact of it on many of the youth in the city. They detail how last June, gunfire broke out in the Buffalo neighborhood of Schiller Park. Caught in the crossfire was a family of schoolchildren: twins Romeo and Juliet, their older brother, Juan, and the eldest, their sister Alina. Almost as soon as the shooting began, a stray bullet hit 11 year-old Juan in the forehead. Juan survived the attack, but the situation forced Alina to take charge, keeping the twins and the rest of her family calm while their parents called for an ambulance. Alina did not return to school the next fall, opting at 14 years old to accept home tutoring so she could care for her brother. It is likely that neither of them will psychologically recover from these lost months.
The psychiatric community widely recognizes the "hidden wounds" of soldiers who return from war with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). More recently, studies regarding children growing up in violence-wrought neighborhoods revealed an alarming statistic: these children's risk for PTSD is three times higher than that of Iraq war veterans. Juan and Alina's story is an exemplefor this growing mental health crisis, another threat to the already-frail notion of childhood.
Our 2017 Education Conference will once again have a focus track on children's mental health issues.
McCance-Katz Confirmed as First Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use
Elinore McCance-Katz, M.D., Ph.D., was confirmed last week by the U.S. Senate as the first Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). This position was a central part of the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act.
As Pete Earley details, during her confirmation hearing one interesting point to note was the discussion of peers. In the fight to pass the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, concerns were raised that the role of peer services would be reduced by the bill. However, "Under questioning by Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Dr. McCance-Katz stated that she believed 'peers are an essential part of recovery.'" Click here to read more about the hearings.
Of the appointment, NAMI CEO Mary Giliberti said, "NAMI is pleased that the Senate has confirmed Dr. McCance-Katz. Dr. McCance-Katz has both federal and local experience and a history of working closely with people with mental illness and their families in implementing policies. And, as an Assistant Secretary who reports directly to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Price, she will be well positioned to coordinate the priorities and actions of all of HHS agencies that touch the lives of people who live with mental illnesses." Click here to read more from NAMI.
Health Care Still Dominates Washington Discussions
Last week, we detailed how the Senate voted down the bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Since the bill's defeat, issues around health care have continued to dominate in the Capitol and there is some hope for bipartisanship to address the complicated issue.
Several Republican and Democrat lawmakers agree that Congress needs to prevent a collapse of the health insurance market, which could hurt millions of consumers -- and that concern has opened up some bipartisan dialogue.
Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tennessee, said the he will be working with Sen. Patty Murray, D-Washington to have the Senate health committee hold bipartisan health care hearings on how to repair the individual market. In the House, a group of 40 lawmakers from both parties endorsed an outline of ideas aimed at making urgent fixes to the ACA. Click here to read more.
concern is that President Trump has threatened to to cancel cost-sharing reductions (CSRs) payments to insurance providers, as part of his effort to make the ACA "implode." But he is running into opposition from key Republicans, including Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (Utah) and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (Texas), who say they want to find a way to guarantee the payments, which reimburse insurers for selling discounted insurance to low-income ACA enrollees. Click here to read more.
2017 NAMIWalksNYS September 23rd
NAMI-NYS looks forward to building on the success of our inaugural NAMIWalks NYS. The 2017 NAMIWalks NYS will be taking place on Saturday, September 23rd, at Jennings Landing in Albany. You can
to start your team and/or donate to the walk.
For more information you can email NAMIWalks@naminys.org
Click here to learn more and register for the 2017 NAMI-NYS Education Conference-
Engagement, Implementation, Internvention: Three Pronged Approach to Sustainable Mental Health Recovery,
taking place November 10-12 at the Desmond Hotel in Albany.
AUGUST 7- Join SAMHSA's Program to Achieve Wellness for part three of our four-part series on Monday, August 7, from 12pm to 1pm ET. Register for Enhancing Personal Capacity for Wellness: Building an Organizational Culture of Wellness.
NAMI-MFH and NYS Office of Mental Health- Community Integration and Employment Exploration:How to Help People Explore Work and Integrate into the Community. Wednesday August 9th from 9:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. at 2390 Riverfront Center, Amsterdam NY 12010. Light refreshments provided. To register please contact: Elizabeth Patience, Phone 315-426-3942 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here to download flyer
- Join SAMHSA's Program to Achieve Wellness for part four of our four-part series on Monday, August14, from 12pm to 1pm ET. Register for Enhancing Personal Capacity for Wellness: Incorporating Refelctive Practices
Click here to register
- NAMI Schenectady Annual Summer Chicken Barbeque. Friday August 25, 2017 from
3:30p.m. - 8:00p.m. at the Niskayuna Community Center: 2682 Aqueduct Rd., Niskayuna, NY. Tickets are $20 ($10 for consumers). Send ticket reservation order and payment to NAMI Schenectady, PO Box 974, Schenectady NY 12301 . Dinner reservations should be purchased in advance. Contact Flora Ramonowski (372-6771) Roy Neville (377-2619) or Cindy Seacord (374-8071) for info.Click here for Flyer
NØpiates Supports International Overdose Awareness Day
on August 31, 2017.
Please consider joining the N
piates Committee at West Sand Lake Elementary School Parking lot, August 31st at 6pm. We will rally and walk to the WSL Fire House for a memorial ceremony and light refreshments.
All are welcome to attend the next N
open meeting, scheduled for Monday, August 7th at 6pm at the Trinity Lutheran Church in West Sand Lake. For more information, or to participate in our memorial event, contact The N
- Annual NAMI Mid-Hudson Gala 2017. Wednesday, September 13, 2017, 5:00 PM - 9:00 PM at The Grandview, 176 Rinaldi Blvd. Poughkeepsie, NY. Gala 2017 Keynote Speaker Kevin Hines, who in 2012 was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding work suicide prevention advocate and speaker by the National Council of Behavioral Health,
Click here to learn more about Gala
. If you have any questions, please contact Tina Yun Lee at
-Healthy Minds Empowerment Conference. from 8:00 AM-2:00 PM at Medaille College 18 Agassiz Cir, Buffalo, NY 14214. For Teens (7th-12th grade), Parents & Teen Leaders.Questions about this event may be directed to Ann Venuto, President of NAMI Buffalo
(716) 689-1159, or Josephine Cross, Chairman of the Health Promotion Committee of AKA Gamma Phi Omega Chapter
/ (716) 636-3014.
Click here for more information
. Join us for a day of free workshops to explore the emotional and mental well being of youth and to empower youth and adults who care for them. *Free Breakfast & Lunch
2017 NAMI-NYS TRAINING SCHEDULE
Please contact your local affiliate program leaders for more information and how to enroll.
NAMI Homefront Teacher Training
September 16th-17th 2017
Trainers: Pam Solomon & Jerry Burton
Location: NAMI-NYS Office Albany
NAMI Family-to-Family Teacher Training
October 20th-22nd, 2017
Trainers: Pam Soloman & Geraldine Burton
Location: NAMI-NYS Office Albany