Visit by December 15 to #GetCovered!  
Remember - plans from must cover #mentalhealth services, medications & preexisting conditions.
November 13, 2018
NAMI NH Welcomes 
 ACLU-NH Filing of Federal Class Action Suit
Focus of suit is on due process rights for people held 
involuntarily in NH Emergency Departments

NAMI New Hampshire welcomes the   filing of a class action suit over the weekend in the Federal District Court in Concord, NH by ACLU of New Hampshire   (American Civil Liberties Union) as a necessary step to ending the systemic discrimination against people with mental illness in regards to their constitutional right to due process as provided by the New Hampshire and US Constitutions. 

NAMI NH Executive Director Ken Norton stated, "Neither NAMI NH, nor anyone involved, want to see individuals in a mental health crisis who are being involuntarily detained released on a legal technicality.  However, the failure to provide them with their constitutional right to due process is a striking example of the discrimination which our state and society perpetuate against people with serious mental illness.  It is our sincere hope that this federal class action suit will immediately bring together all involved parties to identify a sustainable solution to remedy this injustice." 

NAMI NH, joined by fifteen organizations, convened a press conference in January 2013 to address the rapidly escalating crisis of Granite Staters in mental health crisis being "boarded" in emergency departments, waiting for access to inpatient psychiatric treatment.  During that press conference and continuously since then, NAMI NH Executive Director Ken Norton has maintained, "this practice is wrong medically, legally, ethically, morally and economically."  

On Nov. 11 in NH Emergency Departments...
 46 adults and
12 children
were waiting for psychiatric hospital care.

NAMI New Hampshire  can connect those impacted by long ED waits with information and support. Call our Information & Resource Line at 1-800-242-6264 to leave a confidential message, or email

NAMI NH continues to make the ED boarding crisis a top priority of advocacy efforts on behalf of individuals and families affected by mental illness and suicide.  

An Update on Emergency Department Boarding

Community Mental Health Centers Release Emergency Room Wait List Report

NH Community Behavioral Health Association has released a new policy paper: Reducing Variability in Emergency Department Treatment for Patients in a Mental Health Crisis.

  The NH Community Behavioral Health Association is an organization comprised of the ten community mental health centers throughout New Hampshire. These centers serve individuals in our state who are living with - and recovering from - mental illness and emotional disorders. is OPEN: How to buy safely

On Nov. 1, started its annual enrollment period   for health insurance I f you don't have health care coverage or you just need to renew your plan, make time to review your health plan options  before open enrollment ends on December 15.
Some health plans may deny coverage for pre-existing conditions or don't cover mental health care, but there is a way to play it safe and make sure you have mental health coverage in 2019. 
Start at  All health plans on must cover mental health and substance use services at the same level as other health conditions.
Some plans on offer better options than others, so review the plans carefully. Additionally, 8 out of 10 people who sign up on qualify for financial help, which can lower your monthly premiums by about $50 to $100.
Take action by December 15. Don't risk not having health and mental health coverage in 2019. 

Public Policy Update
Public Info. Session on 10 Year Mental Health Plan
**December 3** in Concord - please attend!

Concord Public Information Session
** Monday, December 3, 2018, 5:00 - 7:00 pm **
(Replaces previously scheduled November 15 session)
Location TBD

From the Department of Health and Human Services: "The Department shares with stakeholders the goal of developing and implementing a Ten-Year Mental Health Plan that is responsive to the needs of people who receive mental health services and supports. As we consider public feedback from recent public input sessions, the Department is taking additional time to ensure the final plan reflects all of the comments we've received from advocates, policymakers, and most importantly, the individuals and families who depend on the State's mental health system.

"The draft of the  Ten-Year Mental Health Plan will now be released and posted on the DHHS website on Monday, November 19th. A three-week public comment period on the draft plan will start on that day. 
"The date for the final public input session in Concord has also been changed to provide people an opportunity to review the draft plan prior to the event. The Concord public session will be held on from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm on Monday, December 3rd in Concord. The location for the meeting will be announced shortly."

It's critical that we pack this room! Please plan to attend to show your support for mental health, even if you don't wish to speak.


We're focusing on a unified message:  New Hampshire's mental health service delivery system is not presently meet ing the needs of vulnerable  children, youth, adults and older adults with serious  mental  illness - call on the Governor and Legislature to commit to investing adequate resources to move the  10   Year   Mental   Health   Plan  forward during the next legislative session. 

If you have questions or would like more information, please contact

Our Veterans Deserve Better
Imagine if cancer, heart disease or diabetes was diagnosed just by using a short list of questions to assess symptoms. Sadly, due to the complexity of the brain and lack of strong research, this is how veterans and all Americans are currently diagnosed with mental health conditions. 
This results in many mistakes in diagnosis and ineffective treatment. It's especially tragic when applied to service members and veterans who experience a mental health condition during or after their service.
This is unacceptable for America's veterans and it is unacceptable for all Americans.
As a nation, we must do better. 

Save the Date to Give

Save the date of November 27th, for Giving Tuesday!
#GivingTuesday is a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. #GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving.

This year, help us reach our goal for 87 North State Street, our new home for early intervention and suicide prevention services! 

The  purchase of 87 North State Street represents a new era in our responsiveness to the growing needs for support, education, and advocacy - especially for children and youth.  With this expansion, we have committed to new programs that enhance our ability to support and empower individuals and families, we have increased our staff to expand our reach and serve Granite Staters more widely, and we have built partnerships with thought leaders and decision makers to broaden the statewide commitment to mental health and suicide prevention and postvention. 
Donors who make a gift on Giving Tuesday will be entered to win a $20 gift card to Hannafords!

This Bounty of NAMI NH Goodness Could Be Yours!

Fundraising for 2018's record-breaking NAMIWalks NH wraps up this month - online fundraising pages will be live through November 30.

To extend our thanks to Walkers and Donors in this month of gratitude, we've assembled a veritable cornucopia of NAMI NH swag that could be yours!

Walkers: for every $25 raised via your personal online fundraising page, or mailed via *check (with your name in memo line), you automatically get a chance to win. Raise $50, get (2) chances, etc.

Donors: for every $25 you donate online, to a personal page, or by *check, you're entered to win!

*Please mail checks to: NAMI NH, 85 North State St., Concord, NH  03301.  (Write "NAMIWalks NH" on the memo line & include Walker/Team if applicable)  

Remembering Ry Perry

NAMI NH mourns the tragic death of Ry Perry who died earlier this month as a result of injuries sustained in a mountain biking accident. Ry had an exemplary career as an attorney dedicated to social justice issues and for the last several decades he served as the Director of Client and Legal Services for the NH Department of Health and Human Services Division of Behavioral Health.

Ry was an effective advocate for individuals served by the mental health and developmental servi ces system as well as for their family members, and providers. Ry worked within the Dept of Health and Human Services and Legislature to promote person centered, community based systems of care. 

Those who had the privilege to work with Ry knew him as a selfless individual with a high level of personal integrity. Although he was soft spoken, Ry's integrity and steadfastness amplified his words and actions to improve the quality of life of individuals served by these systems. 

As an attorney, Ry worked on issues that were often divisive - like the federal mental health lawsuit. Yet Ry transcended this divisiveness through his unique ability to seek common ground, focus on solutions and to disagree without being disagreeable, all of which had a calming and grounding effect on others. As a result of these talent and gifts, Ry was sought out as a mentor, role model, confidante and sounding board by many people working to improve the mental health service delivery system in NH and who shared his passion for improving access to care, and promoting different pathways to recovery. 

On behalf of NAMI NH we offer our sincere condolences to his family, friends, colleagues and the many people whose lives he touched.

In the News

Community and Family Support Specialist
(Concord, NH)

NAMI NH is growing! NAMI NH is seeking a Community and Family Support Specialist for a 32 hour per week position. This is a salaried, exempt position. 
Job Summary: This position provides education and support to families of individuals 18 and older so they can become full partners in the assessment, treatment planning and evaluation of the services they or their family member require to address their mental health needs.  This work will be done by providing one on one (1:1) short term support, engaging families in NAMI NH support and education programs and building professional relationships that will enhance referrals to NAMI NH programs                    

Dick Chevréfils Receives Andrus Award

Congratulations to Dick Chevréfils who is the 2018 NH AARP Andrus Award for Community Service recipient. Following decades of work for NH DHHS, and AARP Dick "retired" and now serves as a tireless and passionate volunteer with roles including serving as the current Regional Director for the East Caribbean AARP. 

 Dick is the past NAMI NH Board President and current Chair of NAMI NH's Public Policy Committee and also serves as the current Vice Chair of the Advisory Board of NH Adoptive Families. Dick's community service has had a profound positive impact on individuals, families and organizations in NH and beyond - he has also been a mentor and role model for many non profit leaders in NH. 

 Congratulations to Dick and his family!

Go, Monarchs!

NAMI New Hampshire  represented on the jumbo screen at a  Manchester Monarchs  game last month (howdy, Michele Watson!) and with resources for families from NAMI NH's Director of Children & Youth Programs,  Brian Huckins

Thank you to the Monarchs organization for inviting NAMI NH to be part of DEA National Take Back Night!

NAMI NH & the Lone Star State

Earlier this month,  NAMI New Hampshire's Brian Huckins, Director of Children & Youth Programs, was in Houston, TX to deliver a presentation on Family Peer Support Specialist Certification in the Wraparound Model at the Federation for Families Conference. 

To learn how NAMI NH's Children & Youth Programs team can support your family here in the Granite State, message

NIMH Update

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) provides a monthly e-newsletter with the latest in mental health-related news, resources and grant opportunities from across federal government.

Highlights in the November 2018 issue included:

-- This Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) blog post discusses the new tool, the Early Serious Mental Illness Treatment Locator. This online tool allows users to search for specialty programs that treat early serious mental illness, including first episode psychosis. Each program listing includes eligibility criteria, including age range and diagnoses treated, services provided, location, and contact information.

-- In a study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), researchers have identified differences in how the brains of irritable youth react to frustration. The findings, published in THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PSYCHIATRY, could provide new paths for developing treatments for children and adolescents with severe irritability.

--  This Department of Justice blog post highlights officer health and wellness programs including the VALOR Initiative. This program has provided no-cost training on safety and officer wellness, including mental health, to tens of thousands of law enforcement officers across the country. This year, the VALOR Initiative solicitation requested grant applications for a training program in preventing law-enforcement suicide. 

Read the full November 2018 update here .
Suicide Prevention & Survivors of Suicide Loss
. NH Suicide Prevention Conference

Thank you to the amazing young adult presenters from the Lived, Lost, Loved : A Look at Suicide from a Global to a very Local Scale workshop  at the recent NH Suicide Prevention Conference - they spoke their hearts out.  Hearing these inspirational stories helps raise awareness and convey a strong message of hope, and that they did!  (Pictured L to R:  Amanda Fontaine, Erica Sherman, Dennis Gillan, Seth Noyes and NAMI NH's Debbie Baird)

The NH Suicide Prevention Conference was a great success - selling out with more than 325 attendees dedicated to #suicideprevention in NH.

Kudos to NH's #SuicidePrevention Youth Leaders

A shoutout to the amazing group of young people who are leaders in  #suicideprevention  here in the Granite State - including these folks at the recent  Suicide: The Ripple Effect  event in Concord presented by the NH Suicide Prevention Conference with support from  NAMI New Hampshire #hopestartswithyou   #bethe1to

For information and resources, visit

Catherine Greenleaf Receives Kathleen Sherman Award

Catherine Greenleaf, loss survivor and strong advocate for suicide prevention, was recently recognized as this year's Kathleen Sherman Award winner.  

In 2017, this award was created in honor of Kathleen Sherman who is remembered as an amazing woman, caring mother, dedicated nurse, Navy veteran and active volunteer.   The Kathleen Sherman award is presented annually at the NH Suicide Prevention Conference to a Survivor Loss Speaker or Suicide Prevention Champion.
Catherine Greenleaf is a strong advocate for suicide prevention, an established author, writing the book "Healing the Hurt Spirit" that loss survivors in NH benefit from, and instrumental in helping NAMI NH put together a witness card for those who have found or witnessed a suicide death. She has a gentle soul and kind heart.  Congratulations Catherine - you are so deserving of this award!
Pictured in front of the New NAMI NH Survivor Voices Speakers Quilt (L to R):
Susan Morrison, Erica Sherman (Kathleen Sherman's daughter), Catherine Greenleaf and NAMI NH's Debbie Baird

Saturday, November 17, 2018 is International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day, when people who are affected by suicide loss gather around the world at events in their local communities for support and resources.
There are six participating sites in New Hampshire: Concord, Gilford, Hampstead, Keene, Nashua and Portsmouth.  Visit and look under "Find Support" for registration information on each location.
This year, International  Survivors of Suicide Loss Day will feature a screening of  A Daughter's Journey This film shares hope, connection and resilience in the aftermath of a suicide loss.

In Our Own Voice (IOOV) at NH Suicide Prevention Conference

Speakers from NAMI New Hampshire's In Our Own Voice (IOOV) program presented at the Across the Lifespan with Lived Experience workshop during the recent NH Suicide Prevention Conference.  Pictured L to R:  Morgan Mason, Buddy Carchide, and Kitty O'Leary.

Upcoming with NAMI NH

** Please Note NEW DATES **


NAMI NH Webinar:
Special Needs Trusts

Attorney Ann Butenhof with  Butenhof & Bomster, PC, also a past board member of  NAMI New Hampshire, shares her expertise in this free webinar on Special Needs Trusts.

NAMI NH Webinar:
New Hampshire Hospital Aftercare Coordination

Did you know NAMI New Hampshire offers free webinars on YouTube

To learn more about New Hampshire Hospital Aftercare Coordination from Shannon Murano, M.S., click here.

NAMI NH's Online Groups

NAMI New Hampshire offers four unique online groups - they're places to find peer support, share experiences, offer encouragement, and pass along resources.  These closed Facebook groups require an add from admins - click each link below to learn more and request membership.  Don't hesitate to contact with any questions. 

This group provides a place for youth whose lives are affected by mental illness to share ideas, concerns, and questions they have about planning their future.  (This group is growing - watch for an additional presence on Twitter and Instagram soon!) 

A place to find support, information and to meet other family and friends of adult loved ones with mental illness. The group is intended to provide peer support to our members, to share experiences, offer encouragement and support in ways that are kind, helpful and most of all respectful. 

A place to find support, information and to meet other parents, primary caregivers and loved ones of children, adolescents and young adults with serious emotional disorders (diagnosed or not). The group is intended to provide peer support to our members, to share experiences, offer encouragement and support in ways that are kind, helpful and most of all respectful.

This group is intended to be a place to find support, information and to meet other veteran and military families in NH. It is intended to provide peer support to our members, to share experiences, offer encouragement and support.

Youth Resources on Social Media

NAMI NH and the NH Family Network offer social media platforms, including Facebook Twitter  and now  Instagram , as resources to find information and support for youth affected by mental illness.  Each is administrated by youth with oversight from staff to ensure safe messaging.  Check them out and help us spread the word to those youth who might benefit from accessing these tools.

Veteran & Military Families
Online Support Group

If you or a loved one served, check out NAMI NH's online support group to find information, resources, support and hope.

NAMI Homefront

Registration is open for NAMI Homefront, a free class designed to address the unique needs of family, caregivers and friends of those who have served or are currently serving our country.

Mark Your Calendar

Development News

Our recent campaign to expand suicide prevention and early intervention programs has seen great success, raising 99% of our $125,000 goal. With 100% participation from our Board and staff,  and the generosity of donors like you, we can reach - and even exceed - our original goal.  

Contact Kristen Welch, CFRE, Director of Development to discuss other giving opportunities, or  click here for a printable pledge form

Introducing the NAMI NH Legacy Circle
Every year, mental illness impacts the lives of at least one in five adults and children in the Granite State.
NAMI New Hampshire is a grassroots organization working to improve the lives of all people affected by mental illness and suicide through support, education, and advocacy. 
Many New Hampshire citizens concerned about mental illness have chosen to make provisions in their wills or trusts to support the work of NAMI New Hampshire, becoming charter members of the NAMI New Hampshire Legacy Circle.  The Legacy Circle recognizes those who have generously included NAMI New Hampshire in their estate planning, and we invite you to consider joining this thoughtful and generous group! 
Ways to Become a Legacy Circle Member:
·         Designate NAMI NH as a charitable beneficiary of your will or trust
·         Name NAMI NH the beneficiary of all or part of an Individual Retirement Account (IRA)
·         Speak to NAMI NH about how to make a gift that will pay you income for your lifetime
·         Name NAMI NH the beneficiary of a life insurance policy.

For more information, or to let us know you have included NAMI New Hampshire in your estate plans, please contact Kristen  or call 603-225-5359 x350.  Sample bequest language is available on our  website .

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The preparation of this newsletter was financed under an agreement with the State of New Hampshire, Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Behavioral Health, with funds provided in part or in whole by the State of New Hampshire and/or the United States Department of Health and Human Services.
NAMI NH | 85 N. State St. | 603.225.5359 | |