News and Alerts
New from the Clearinghouse: A New Website, a New Webinar, and More!
The National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse has launched its new and improved website! The new website contains all the documents and information that were available on the old site, and more – and it is easier to navigate! Search for information using resource topics in the “Resources” dropdown menu, or use “Search Our Site” on the right-side navigation bar. The Clearinghouse web address is the same: http://www.mhselfhelp.org. You can still order technical assistance guides using the web form by clicking on Catalog, at the very bottom of the right-side bar. New resources include recordings and PowerPoint documents for the Temple University Collaborative /Clearinghouse Peer Specialist Webinar Series. The next webinar in the series – on “Helping the People You Serve to Connect to the Religious/Spiritual Congregations of Their Choice” – will take place on May 16, 2013, from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET (1 p.m. CT, noon MT, 11 a.m. PT). This webinar will invite participants to share their experiences in the following areas: What have been your experiences with organized religious and/or spiritual organizations? How responsive do you feel religious and/or spiritual groups have been to the people you serve? What roles should/could you play in promoting congregational connections? And what recommendations would you make to the field? To register, go to: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5060552094570644224. Also available on the new website is the latest Clearinghouse Key Assistance Report: Focus on Peer-Run Crisis Respite Services. This publication is available at http://www.mhselfhelp.org/storage/publications/key-assistance-reports/KAR%20Focus%20on%20Peer-Run%20Crisis%20Respites%201.pdf
People with Psychiatric Disabilities Have No Place in Gun Safety Debate, Bazelon Center Says
The Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law has released a paper –“Wrong Target: Mental Health in the Gun Safety Debate” – highlighting research indicating that the gun safety debate should have nothing to do with people who have psychiatric disabilities. Decrying the “knee-jerk, myth-based proposals that wrongly target mental health despite the lack of relationship with gun violence,” Jennifer Mathis of the Bazelon Center urges lawmakers who are serious about reducing gun violence to “focus on guns, not people with psychiatric disabilities. . . . Though fixing our broken mental health system is an imperative, we should do so separately from the gun debate, as mental health reforms are likely to have little impact on gun violence.” The paper is available at the following link: http://bazelon.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=3VY7DQkm_DA%3d&tabid=655.
Guide Offers Help on Developing and Maintaining a Peer-Run Warmline
“So You Want to Start a Peer-Run Warmline? A Guide to Developing and Maintaining a Sustainable Warmline” is available for free download at the following link: http://www.power2u.org/downloads/Warmline-Guide.pdf. The guide, co-authored by the National Empowerment Center and the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse, “draws on the advice and experience of existing warmlines and provides tips on fundraising, marketing/outreach, training, supervision, data collection, evaluation, and much, much more!” The guide and other information about peer-run warmlines are available at the source below. If you know of a warmline that is not included in the guide, please share this information with the Clearinghouse by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 800-553-4539.
ADS Center Webinar Covers Workplace and Community Health and Safety Issues
You are invited to attend a free webinar, entitled “Corporate Pioneers – Creating Cultures of Caring: Enhancing Health and Safety in the Workplace and the Larger Community,” on Thursday, May 9, 2013, from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET (2 p.m. CT, 1 p.m. MT, noon PT). The webinar is sponsored by SAMHSA’s Resource Center to Promote Acceptance, Dignity and Social Inclusion Associated with Mental Health (ADS Center). “During this webinar, you will hear from three employers, including both county and corporate leaders, who have developed and implemented mentally healthy, innovative, cost-effective programs that are making a difference within their respective workplaces, and learn how these can be replicated.” To learn more and to register, go to the source below:
Free Webinar on the ACA and Implications for Recovery-Oriented Practice
A SAMHSA-sponsored webinar on “The Affordable Care Act and Implications for Recovery-Oriented Practice” will take place on May 9, 2013, from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET (2 p.m. CT, 1 p.m. MT, noon PT). The webinar will address how implementation of healthcare reform can reinforce and expand the recovery orientation of behavioral health care. It will feature two national leaders in the field – Ron Manderscheid, Ph.D., executive director of the National Association of County Behavioral Health and Developmental Disability Directors, and Harvey Rosenthal, executive director of the New York Association of Psychiatric Rehabilitation Services. The webinar will be recorded and available for download shortly after the event. On a related theme, a webinar organized by SAMHSA and State Refor(u)m, entitled “States Prepare for the Newly Insured: A Conversation about Mental Health and Substance Abuse Needs,” will take place on May 13 from noon to 1:30 p.m. ET (11 a.m. CT, 10 a.m. MT, 9 a.m. PT). The webinar will feature state and local officials and other experts discussing how states are preparing to ensure service access for individuals newly covered through Medicaid and Health Insurance Exchanges. More information and registration for both webinars are available at the sources below, respectively.
Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal Solicits Articles on Parents with Psychiatric Disabilities
The Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal (PRJ) is soliciting articles for its upcoming special issue about families in which the parents are living with psychiatric disabilities. Appropriate submissions include research papers, first-person accounts, and others, as described at the source below. “All papers will be peer reviewed, and should be submitted through the Manuscript Submission Portal, under the Instructions to Authors at: http://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/prj/. Submissions should follow the standard guidelines for PRJ. Please inform the PRJ Managing Editor in an email that the manuscript is to be considered for publication for the special issue on Parents with Psychiatric Disabilities and Their Families. The deadline for submission of papers is July 15, 2013.” Details are available at the source below.
Examine Social Factors to Explain Rise in Psychiatric Diagnoses, Researchers Advise
Examining social factors is vital to explaining the dramatic rise in the number of Americans diagnosed with mental health conditions in recent years, experts say. Their conclusions, released on April 24, 2013 (see http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/early/2013/04/22/hlthaff.2011.0596) by the journal Health Affairs, precede the May release of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). The authors argue that the DSM-5 has missed crucial population-level and social determinants. “If we are to believe current reports, there are 12 times more children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in the U.S. than in Europe and, within the U.S., there are almost 50 percent more children with ADHD today than a decade ago, according to [the] DSM,” observes the article’s lead author, Helena Hansen, M.D., Ph.D., of New York University. “My colleagues and I wanted to know if there was something else behind this,” she said. The researchers suggest that one of the three possible causes of the rise in diagnoses that are not currently accounted for in the DSM is whether the diagnostic criteria are written in a way that includes people who do not have a disorder: “For example, do the criteria for ADHD of excessive running, climbing, and talkativeness describe a high level of energy that should be expected among children?” The researchers propose an independent review of these factors.
Café TA Center Explores Essential Role of Veterans with Lived Experience in Mental Health Workforce
In “Expanding the Role of Veterans in the Mental Health Workforce: Peer Specialists and Beyond,” the Café TA Center “examines the essential role that veterans with lived experience can play in serving their fellow vets as part of the mental health system of care. Given the prevalence of stigma surrounding mental health needs in the military, veterans that have experienced trauma and engaged in recovery are uniquely positioned to break through the stigma, reach out to their peers, and find a meaningful role in civilian society as part of the system of care that meets the needs of our returning veterans.” The publication is available at the source below.
Suicide Survivors Are Invited to Tell Their Stories for an Online Photo Project
Photographer Dese’Rae L. Stage is inviting survivors of attempted suicide to participate in “Live Through This,” a collection of photographic portraits and personal accounts. “I am still seeking attempt survivors to share their stories for ‘Live Through This,’ ” she writes on her website http://livethroughthis.org/, where some of these accounts and photographs have been posted. Anyone who would like to participate in this project should email her at email@example.com with the following information: “age . . . location, phone number, a brief description of the situation surrounding your suicide attempt, and whether or not you’re comfortable being filmed (please note that your voice will be recorded, at the very least). In order to participate, you must be willing to use your full name and sign a model release,” available on the “Live Through This” website. She also notes, “This is a long-term project, and it may take some effort to coordinate meeting/shooting sessions. Your patience is greatly appreciated.” Blogs for suicide attempt survivors are also available at http://whichtools.wordpress.com (Talking about Suicide) and http://www.suicidology.org/web/guest/home (American Association of Suicidology).
Responses to Sandy Hook Are Available Online
Among the online information available in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy are a Research and Practice Brief from the Center on Adherence and Self-Determination – “CASD Responses to Sandy Hook” – at http://www.adherenceandselfdetermination.org/images/stories/rpb%2011%20april%202013%204-02-13.pdf and additional information on the SAMHSA website, at http://blog.samhsa.gov/2012/12/14/responding-to-the-sandy-hook-school-tragedy/. Both of these links include other links to additional information, including “Misguided focus on mental illness,” by Mark Salzer, Ph.D., published in The Philadelphia Inquirer, and “Coping with Violence and Traumatic Events” on the SAMHSA website. “While a serious discussion on how to address gun and other violence in this country is sorely needed,” the CASD document notes, “the current dialogue focusing on mental illness and its relationship to violence is alarming to those of us who are concerned about mental illness stigma, have loved ones with lived experience of mental illness, and or have lived experience of our own.”
Free Webinar on Employment Challenges for Peers with a Criminal Justice History
The Peerlink National Technical Assistance Center will host a free webinar on “Building Blocks of Peers & Employment: Individuals with History of Criminal Justice System Engagement” on May 23, 2013, at 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET, 1 p.m. CT, noon MT, 11 a.m. PT. The webinar will cover barriers and challenges to employment for individuals with a criminal justice history, useful strategies and approaches to effectively address these challenges, and available resources. To register, click on the following link: https://cc.readytalk.com/cc/s/registrations/new?cid=3embp7jycljr
Is Believing in God Good for Your Mental Health? Maybe!
Two studies have reached different conclusions on whether belief in God is good for one’s mental health. The larger study, published April 10 in the Journal of Religion & Health, indicated that believers in an angry, vengeful God are likelier to experience social anxiety, paranoia, obsessional thinking, and compulsions. Analyzing the responses of 1,426 Americans to a 2010 Baylor University poll on religious beliefs, researchers found that emotional problems were more common among those who believed in a punitive God than among those who believed in either a benevolent God or a deistic (uninvolved) God. However, some experts questioned whether the belief in a punitive God led to emotional problems or if emotional problems caused people to see God as punitive. Meanwhile, a second study – of 159 individuals in a day treatment program – found that belief in God may significantly improve the outcomes of those receiving short-term psychiatric treatment. This study was published in the April 25 issue of the Journal of Affective Disorders. “Our work suggests that people with a moderate to high level of belief in a higher power do significantly better in short-term psychiatric treatment than those without, regardless of their religious affiliation,” said researcher David H. Rosmarin, Ph.D., of Harvard Medical School.
A Change in Day and Time for Our Monthly National Networking Teleconference!
Because some people have let us know that they would like to participate in the monthly national networking teleconferences of the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse but they can’t do so during the workday, we are changing the day and time of the next teleconference, which will be held Tuesday, May 21, at 8 p.m. ET, 7 p.m. CT, 6 p.m. MT and 5 p.m. PT. The call-in number is 866-906-0123; the pass code is 5037195#. The purpose of the call is for peer movement activists from around the U.S. to get together, share information, and “network.” Join us! Again, the next call will take place on Tuesday, May 21, 2013, at 8 p.m. ET, 7 p.m. CT, 6 p.m. MT and 5 p.m. PT. If you have a topic or topics you would like to see discussed on this call, please write to Susan Rogers firstname.lastname@example.org with the word “Agenda” in the subject line. Please note that this new day and time are just for May; we will keep you posted on the date and time for June!
Consumer-Driven Services Directory
The Clearinghouse welcomes all programs in which consumers play a significant role in leadership and operation to apply for inclusion in its Directory of Consumer-Driven Services. The directory, accessible at http://www.cdsdirectory.org, is searchable by location, type of organization, and targeted clientele, and serves as a free resource for consumers, program administrators and researchers. Apply online athttp://www.cdsdirectory.org/database/cds.php, via fax at 215-636-6312, or by phone at 800-553-4KEY (4539). To receive an application by mail, write to email@example.com or NMHCSH Clearinghouse, 1211 Chestnut Street, Suite 1100, Philadelphia, PA 19107.
About The Key Update
The Key Update is the free monthly e-newsletter of the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse. Volume 9, No. 10, April 2013, http://www.mhselfhelp.org
For content, reproduction or publication information, please contact Susan Rogers at 800-553-4539 x3812, 267-507-3812 (direct) or firstname.lastname@example.org.