The STARR News: July 2022

July is
BIPOC Mental Health Month

We are well into July, but you still have time to engage in activities and events that support Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) mental health awareness.

The term “BIPOC” is widely recognized by MHA, NAMI, and DBSA to be used in place of "Minority" for Mental Health Month. As language is always evolving and important, we want to continue to educate stakeholders with the latest information available.

We love DBSA's BIPOC Mental Health Month theme of Meeting You Where You Are and their Identity and Culture resources:

"Each person’s mental health journey is unique. A person’s family history, race, ethnicity, and culture all play an important role in how mental health is understood and addressed.

While a sense of community and belonging is a known protective factor for mental health, experiencing discrimination, harassment, or lack of access to health care can exacerbate mental health conditions.

Learning about how culture and identity factors affect mental health is the first step to addressing inequality and ensuring everyone has access to mental health care."

Check out DBSA's website for their Identity and Culture resources HERE.
Project RockSTARR Advocacy Ace Awards

The RockSTARR Advocacy Ace Awards are given to individuals whose screened volunteers have designated the most donations to their local advocacy organizations. We'll feature our Advocacy Aces throughout the year.

This month, we're delighted to spotlight Allison Laska, part of the team at UCONN Health's Department of Psychiatry, who have raised over $800 in donations for their local NAMI and MHA chapters through the RockSTARR program. Two checks will be delivered to the site to take to the local NAMI and MHA offices to help build those relationships.

Thanks for your great work, Allison!
This month's STARR Podcast Spotlights
Steve Miccio
and the Amazing People-USA!

In this episode, we introduce Steve Miccio, founder and CEO of People-USA, who joins host Mallory Mercer to discuss his unique model of crises intervention and respite housing. Steve has created warm, peer-led stabilization and recovery centers that offer hope and ongoing support to the communities they serve.

Steve lends an insightful perspective based on his own personal experience and years of working with individuals living with mental illness, assisting them on the path to wellness. Meet Steve on this month's featured podcast HERE.

For this and all of the STARR Podcasts, you can find the STARR Podcast archive HERE.
Parts excepted from "Our mental health crisis is getting worse. New 988 suicide hotline can be our fresh start." from USA Today.

988, the mental health equivalent of 911, is about to launch across the United States.

Beginning July 16, a new 988 number will be available 24/7 for Americans dealing with a mental health crisis.

July's launch of 988, a new mental health crisis response number, marks a historic opportunity to ensure that the growing number of people in crisis can get appropriate and more equitable access to mental health services – and that our broader emergency response infrastructure (which includes 911, emergency medical services and law enforcement) can guide people to the right places, at the right times.

By July 16, all telecommunications carriers must provide access to 988, which will direct calls to a switchboard that provides free crisis counseling and emotional support and connects them to one of more than 180 crisis centers nationwide.

The new, easy-to-remember 988 will provide an alternate access point into care and help keep people in crisis from needlessly cycling through hospital emergency rooms and the criminal justice system. It will also provide minority communities that are often fearful of calling 911 for a loved one in mental health crisis, an option less biased toward a response based solely in law enforcement.

This new option will save lives and steer thousands of people into more appropriate treatment.

To read the full article, visit USA TODAY.
Don't miss NAMI's webinar "Help Not Handcuffs — A Day in the Life: Mental Health Emergencies and Police Response"
This webinar will continue the conversation from NAMI's March 8th Help Not Handcuffs session featuring Ernie Stevens and Joe Smarro from “Ernie and Joe: Crisis Cops.” Dirk Butler from the Center for Policing Equity and Ron Bruno from CIT International will also be joining the conversation to address collective solutions for justice diversion and compassionate crisis response.

Register HERE.

We highly recommend checking out the HBO documentary “Ernie and Joe: Crisis Cops” which is available for virtual screening from July 17 - July 24, 2022 for all registrants.

Join the webinar on Tuesday, July 19, 2022, from 7-8:30pm ET.
The 2022 NINDS Nonprofit Forum will take place as a FULLY VIRTUAL event July 19-20, 2022. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) invites members of nonprofit organizations to an annual Nonprofit Forum. The Progress through Partnership Forum provides an opportunity for nonprofit leaders to network with colleagues and to engage in discussions with NINDS staff.

2022 Rally for Medical Research -- Join advocates from around the country for the 2022 Rally for Medical Research! The Hill Day will take place on Wednesday, September 14, with advocates meeting their congressional representatives and staff. The evening before, on September 13, we will host a reception to celebrate medical research with all partners and participants. Together, we will continue to call on our nation’s policymakers to make funding for NIH a national priority and raise awareness about the importance of continued investment in medical research that leads to MORE PROGRESS, MORE HOPE and MORE LIVES SAVED. Learn more here.
The Site Solutions Summit is being held October 7-9, 2022 in Hollywood, Florida. Organized by the Society for Clinical Research Site (SCRS), the Site Solutions Summit provides a unique hub where sites, sponsors, CRO executives, and regulators come together to discuss best practices and ideas while developing strategic partnerships through ideation sessions, workshops, and focus groups. Learn more here.

ASCP Psychopharmacology Update: State-of-the-Art Fall Meeting
The virtual meeting is being held October 15-16, 2022, with a program designed to provide state-of-the-art education on new developments in psychopharmacology for psychiatrists and other professionals already knowledgeable about the pharmacologic treatment of psychiatric disorders. The goal is to have the participants better assess patients in need of psychopharmacologic intervention and properly administer state-of-the-art treatment. Learn more here.
The 147th Annual Meeting of the American Neurological Association (ANA2022) will be held in Chicago October 22 - 25, 2022. Registration is now open. Additionally, the Research Careers Reimagined Course Planning Subcommittee, is offering a Research Careers Reimagined Course (RCR), which is taking the place of the prior Translational and Clinical Research Course (TCRC). Learn more here.

Neuroscience 2022 will be held in-person in San Diego, CA, November 12-16. SfN will also offer a sampling of annual meeting content virtually, including the opportunity for virtual posters. Each year, scientists from around the world congregate to discover new ideas, share their research, and experience the best the field has to offer. Find more information here.

CNS Summit 2022 will be held November 17-20 at The Boca Raton Resort. Founded in 2009 by R&D leaders in Life Sciences, CNS Summit was created to advance clinical development, with a focus on innovation, collaboration and technology. Find more information here.

Did you know that
 STARR Certified Sites have FREE ACCESS to the Auditory Hallucination Simulation?

One of the many benefits of being STARR Certified is free access to the STARR's Auditory Hallucination Simulation
Empathy-based training is a powerful tool to allow individuals to step into the shoes of someone who is living with a specific indication. The STARR Coalition has created an Auditory Hallucination Simulation (AHS) in which participants can experience one symptom associated with brain disorders, auditory hallucinations. This exercise has transformed perceptions of brain disorders for individuals who have participated in this exercise.
Last fall, The Jed Foundation (JED) collaborated with Representative Susan Wild (D-PA-07) to introduce the Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Through Campus Planning Act. This bill amends the Higher Education Act of of 1965 to include a requirement that the Department of Education encourage universities to implement comprehensive mental health and suicide prevention plans for their students. On Thursday, June 23rd, this legislation passed the House 405-16! JED’s government affairs and advocacy team is working closely with senators on both sides of the aisle to get a Senate companion bill introduced soon.

Small NIH study reveals how immune response triggered by COVID-19 may damage the brain -- SARS-CoV-2 infection can trigger the production of immune molecules that damage cells lining blood vessels in the brain, causing platelets to stick together and form clots. Blood proteins also leak from the blood vessels, leading to inflammation and the destruction of neurons. The findings could give insight into long-term neurological symptoms of COVID-19.

Development of Psychosis Influenced by Neighborhood -- A first-of-its kind study published in Schizophrenia Research looked at how demographic factors might play a different role in the development of non-affective psychosis (e.g. schizophrenia) when compared to affective psychosis (e.g., bipolar disorder). This research was built on previous findings from Dr. Peter Schofield of King's College London looking at the role of the neighborhood in the development of severe mental illness. Specifically, they looked at the neighborhood that people lived in when they were 15 years old and their subsequent medical history i.e. the probability that people developed either non-affective psychosis (schizophrenia) or affective psychosis (bipolar disorder). Results showed that where someone lived as a 15-year-old was a big influence on the rates of subsequent conditions for both non-affective and affective psychosis.

Depression in Fathers and Children Linked, Regardless of Genetic Relatedness -- Adolescent depression and behavior problems are on the rise and paternal depression may be contributing to this increase, regardless of whether the fathers and children are genetically related, according to new research from Penn State and Michigan State. “A lot of research focuses on depression within biologically related families,” said Jenae Neiderhiser, Social Science Research Institute cofunded faculty member and distinguished professor of psychology and human development and family studies at Penn State. “Now more information is becoming available for adoptive families and blended families.” Neiderhiser and Alex Burt, professor of clinical science at Michigan State, along with their colleagues found paternal depression was associated with adolescent depression and adolescent behavior problems regardless of whether the fathers and their children were genetically related. “The results pointed squarely to the environmental transmission of depression and behaviors between fathers and children,” said Burt, who has been collaborating on projects with Neiderhiser since the early 2000s.

Brain Pathway That Helps to Explain Light’s Effect on Mood Discovered -- In a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, a research team at Brown University used functional MRI to reveal how light-intensity signals reach the brain, and how brain structures involved in mood process those signals. The study demonstrated that some regions of the cerebral cortex involved in cognitive processing and mood show sensitivity for light intensity. From changes in daylight across seasons to the artificial lighting choices in workplaces, it’s clear that the quantity and quality of light that a person encounters can significantly impact mood.

Genetic Testing May Benefit Patients With Depression -- A new U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs study found that pharmacogenomic testing can help providers avoid prescribing antidepressant medications that may have undesirable outcomes. The researchers also found that the patients who underwent genetic testing had more positive outcomes, compared with patients in usual care. Over 24 weeks of treatment, the group with genetic testing had in a drop in depression symptoms—with a peak effect at 12 weeks. Each patient in the study had major depressive disorder.

One Mind invites you to watch their newest documentary short film that was created in collaboration with Liberty Mutual Insurance. The film amplifies the voices of homeless youth in Boston and the challenges they face, including the impact on their mental health, as they aspire to a future off the streets. Watch it at
In May, as part of their Mental Health Awareness Month program, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) is galvanizing experts, advocates, other mental health organizations and supporters, and YOU to demand #MoreForMentalHealth. We need improved access to support, education, better services and understanding. Get involved by encouraging more openness and advocating for the legislation that we know saves lives. Find more information HERE and check out their video HERE.

Are you STARR Certified?
The STARR Site Certification was created to help advance mental health clinical research by promoting community engagement, empathy, and communication between research sites, staff, patients, and advocacy groups, as well as providing support for best practices around working with advocacy, suicide prevention, and other areas that enhance clinical research.
Everything The STARR Coalition does comes from our stakeholders looking to make positive change. 

The STARR Coalition is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, our Tax ID # is 47-4634007.
Visit us on the web at
Like us on Facebook, connect with us on LinkedIn.
The STARR Coalition is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, our Tax ID # is 47-4634007.
The STARR Coalition | phone: 501-725-8890 |