Monday, December 21, 2009

NAMI StigmaBuster

NAMI StigmaBuster Alert: December 18, 2009

Send Your Governor a New Year's Card
Happy New Year

NAMI's top priority for 2010 is to save state mental health services from massive state budget cuts.

Mental illness does not discriminate. It can strike anyone at any time and affects Democrats and Republicans alike. But with so many issues competing for decreasing state funds during a period of economic crisis, your voices are needed to speak out for thousands of individuals living with mental illness.

Too many times, mental illness is overlooked, marginalized, trivialized or stigmatized.

Without state and local mental health services, too many people living with mental illness end up in emergency rooms, hospitalized, in shelters, on the street or in jail.

State budget proposals are being drawn up now.

* As we approach the New Year, please send holiday cards-the bigger the better-to your governor and state legislators. Write "Please protect and strengthen mental health care in 2010. We can't take anymore cuts." Add a few short personal comments.
* Ask family and friends to do so as well.
* Here is a link to governors' statehouse postal addresses. Please check your state government's Web sites or other sources for addresses of your state legislators.

What a Year! Looking Back on 2009
The Soloist

NAMI's StigmaBusters made some strong steps forward this past year.

* The movie The Soloist premiered and is now a possible contender for an Academy Award in 2010. Nathanial Ayers, the violinist living with schizophrenia, on whom the movie is based, performed at the NAMI national convention.
* Actress Glenn Close launched the Bring Change2Mind campaign, joining the fight against stigma.
* NAMI launched its "Puzzle Pieces" public service announcements (PSAs) encouraging people to connect with and support people living with mental illness.
* During Mental Illness Awareness Week, PBS television stations broadcast Minds on the Edge: Facing Mental Illness, a provocative look at the mental health care system and indictment of stigma.

Happy Holidays

Thank you for your support this past year. Best wishes for a happy, healthy holiday season and the New Year.
We look forward to further progress in 2010.
Your support will continue to help make a difference in the new year.
Out of the Inbox
Because of the large number of StigmaBuster messages received, they cannot all be answered individually; however, we appreciate every e-mail and do review every stigma report and prioritize them for action.
We also appreciate receiving copies of responses. They are important in helping to coordinate strategy and pursue genuine dialogue. You are our eyes and ears! Your help makes a difference!

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