Mental health can have a serious impact on a business. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 80% of adults with depression reported at least some difficulty with work, home, or social activities because of their depression symptoms.
Unfortunately, disorders like anxiety and depression often go undetected for months or years. Unlike physical illnesses, mental health issues are more challenging to pinpoint.
Even though mental health can often be a taboo topic, especially in the workplace, it appears that employees want their employer to champion mental health and well-being.
The bridge of hope is a human one, forged from the bravery and resilience of individuals like James Sherrick and Ken Miller. As the new CEO of Mental Health Partnerships, I am proud to lead an organization comprised of peers, exceptional individuals like James and Ken whose valuable lived experience allows MHP to support thousands of people in their recovery journey each year.
James and Ken have my deep respect not only for the tremendous work they are doing in our community, but for sharing some of the challenges to becoming a Certified Peer Support Specialist. As the demand for Certified Peers continues to grow, we need to find ways to make trainings more accessible and this career path more sustainable. I applaud Aneri Pattani for highlighting both the great need for and the challenges facing peers who want to help someone else walk their path to recovery. ~Dr. Adriana Torres-O'Connor
On behalf of Governor Wolf’s Unified Opioid Command Center, I would like to let you know of a new online tool launching to help individuals identify drug and alcohol treatment options and supportive services for themselves or a loved one.
A team comprised of staff from the Departments of Drug and Alcohol Programs and Human Services worked together to create the Drug and Alcohol Referral Tool (DART) to centralize the ways to connect a person to drug and alcohol treatment as well as related support resources. The DART can be found at www.ddap.pa.gov/GetHelp.
The DART is a free, anonymous resource. Results are generated based on a person’s answers to the nine (9) questions included, and users may skip a question at any point. When they finish the questionnaire, they will be able to email, download, and/or print their results. The tool is not a diagnostic assessment and does not gauge eligibility for any programs listed in a person’s results.
Thank you for your continued support as we help Pennsylvanians affected by substance use disorder.
Lynn Kovich, Deputy Secretary Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Department of Human Services
Are you a health care hero or do you know someone who is?
The National Council for Behavioral Health is looking for people, groups, and organizations that have made a difference in the lives of people with mental illnesses and addictions – through treatment, advocacy, leadership, management, and technology.
If you would like to submit a nomination, please use the newly streamlined form here, by Monday, January 7, 2019.
They are looking for nominations of exceptional individuals in the behavioral health settings, including Peer Support Workers.
Nominate yourself or a colleague, register for NatCon19, and grab your seats for the Awards of Excellence celebration, Tuesday, March 26, 2019, in beautiful and historic Nashville.
The Awards of Excellence will have it all – golden trophies, heartfelt speeches and top-notch entertainment. Why would you want to be anywhere else?
The Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services will be making training available to county staff and providers in 2019 to enable their mental health services to better meet the needs of individuals who are transgender or gender nonconforming. There will be both online and in-person opportunities with at least one in-person training targeted to each OMHSAS Region.
The Gender and Sexuality Development Clinic at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is partnering with OMHSAS to develop this training specific to the needs of our mental health system. In order to ensure they appropriately meet staff needs, they have created a survey to gather feedback. If you would like to provide your input, the survey will be open through December 20, 2018.
Bruce Springsteen is opening up about his mental health struggles.
In a new interview with Esquire, the rock star is candid in discussing two emotional breakdowns he suffered -- one when he was 32 and another when he was in his 60s.
"I have come close enough to [mental illness] where I know I am not completely well myself," said Springsteen, 69.
"I've had to deal with a lot of it over the years, and I'm on a variety of medications that keep me on an even keel; otherwise I can swing rather dramatically and ... just ... the wheels can come off a little bit. So we have to watch, in our family. I have to watch my kids, and I've been lucky there. It ran in my family going way before my dad."
Springsteen also spoke about his late father, Doug Springsteen, who wrestled with his own demons and was diagnosed with schizophrenia later in his life.
"All I do know is as we age, the weight of our unsorted baggage becomes heavier ...
President, CEO Michael Brody will transition leadership to Dr. Adriana Torres-O'Connor
Philadelphia, Pa. November 12, 2018 - After nearly a decade of service with Mental Health Partnerships, Michael Brody is retiring as President and CEO effective December 31, 2018. He will be succeeded by Dr. Adriana Torres-O'Connor who joins the organization December 3, 2018. The change in the organizations leadership was announced by Stephen St.Vincent, Mental Health Partnerships' Board Chairman.
On Sunday morning, a very special team of first responders left from South Jersey and were headed to California to help the victims of both the fires and the mass shooting. Cece the Golden Retriever and her two friends make up the lovable team from Tri-State Canine Response Team. - 6ABC News
MHP President and CEO Michael Brody made the following statement: “MHP stands strongly against treatment practices that utilize coercive tactics. The criteria with which one is involuntarily committed is often not meaningful, relevant, or constitutional, and disregards an individual’s civil liberties. Receiving two “F’s” and “D” on this scale proves that Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey respect the individual’s self determination, and their right to be the decision-maker in their treatment plan. Rather than focusing on forced or coercive treatment, greater attention should be placed on increasing the array of services that people have available that they say work best for them.”
MHP encourages you to make your voice heard by activating YOUR superpower ... the right to vote. Today is National Voter Registration Day and we want to make sure you'll be able to cast your ballot to support important issues such as access to treatment, funding for community based mental health services, behavioral health parity, and many others!
In South Philadelphia, a community of tight neighborhoods and strong traditions, a long-hidden opioid crisis is starting to reveal itself.
At Broad and Snyder Streets, next to a booming restaurant row and a major transit hub, Destinie Campanella makes her rounds. She lugs a bag full of Narcan, the overdose reversal drug, and water bottles to the corner where a few people in addiction sleep on cardboard mattresses. It's a sight familiar a few miles away in the open-air heroin scene of Kensington, but not here.
MHP, in partnership with Mural Arts' Porchlight program, hosted our ribbon cutting ceremony on August 28th. The mural is a fantastic testament to the work that we do as ambassadors of hope and of the resilience and power of the individuals with whom we partner.
The mural is designed by artists Eric Okdeh and Alvin Tull and created in partnership with Mental Health Partnership’s A New Life Recovery and Education Center in West Philadelphia, and is now viewable at 885 N Preston Street in West Philly.
“They blocked traffic. They held signs. They spoke of dead friends.
But the march for safe injection sites outside City Hall on Wednesday was encouraging — simply because advocates were bringing the fight downtown.
Of course, the politicians managed to hide anyway.
With 1,217 people dead from overdoses here in 2017, the highest rate of any major city, not a single City Council member bothered to show his or her face — if not in support of safe injection sites, at least in support of finding other measures to keep people alive.”
MHP’s own Carla Sofronski and Destinie Campanella are featured in the coverage of this protest.
PMHCA was a plaintiff in a lawsuit against the PA Department of Human Services that resulted in a unanimous PA Supreme Court decision to again make General Assistance available to people in Pennsylvania. The Mental Health Association in PA, a partner in many advocacy efforts, was also one of the several plaintiffs. Disability Rights PA represented our concerns about Act 80, a piece of legislation passed in 2012 during the Corbett administration which eliminated the General Assistance category.
Community Legal Services prepared a fact sheet providing this information.
Gloria Casarez Residence at 1315 North 8th Street, an LGBTQ-friendly community, is offering 30 subsidized units of supportive housing to young adults (age 18 to 23 upon move-in) who are at-risk of homelessness or are currently or formerly homeless.
Treatment programs and options have shifted in recent years. They’ve become more individualized and inclusive of families and others in people’s lives, and take into account patient histories, medical problems and other social challenges.
Two titans of our world, Joseph and Susan Rogers retired from MHP today, June 29, 2018. We celebrate this new chapter in each of their lives and are humbled and grateful for the decades of advocacy, leadership and powerful change that they authored not only for themselves, but alongside thousands of individuals living with a mental health condition. Together, they insisted that we believe in hope, that our belief required action and then paved the way for us to build a bridge to hope -- through peer support, community inclusion, and demanding a seat at the table. Today, because of their work, thousands of people diagnosed with a mental health condition are living the lives they had always imagined for themselves.
Thank you, Joseph and Susan! We wish you the best!
Mental Health Partnerships (MHP) is shocked and horrified by the atrocities and human rights violations happening to families and children attempting to cross the United States southern border. Michael Brody, President and CEO of MHP, released the following statement in response:
The Poor People's Campaign is a continuation of the nonviolent action started by Martin Luther King Jr. fifty years ago. He and others invited people who had been divided to stand together against the “triplets of evil”—militarism, racism, and economic injustice—to insist that people need not die from poverty in the richest nation ever to exist.
In 2018, hundreds of organizations and thousands of people have gathered together to stand against poverty and inequality, ecological devastation, systemic racism and the war economy and militarism. May started the beginning of 40 days of moral nonviolent action in over 40 state capitals across the country. The campaign will end on June 23rd in Washington D.C. in a mass rally to Stand Against Poverty.
The hope-building we do, together with our many partners, is not something that’s easily defined, measured, and evaluated. Nor is it easily shared with people secondhand. That doesn’t mean we won’t keep trying to show the impact of hope in action. Indeed, the data and the myriad stories from our partners are both the result of and source for hope.
As an organization and movement built on hope and great achievements, it’s no surprise we look toward 2018 with such anticipation.
Mental Health Partnerships, a city-contracted nonprofit that provides behavioral health services, has conducted their outreach and survey efforts in Kensington’s homeless camps. While those results are not yet published, the organization’s findings line up with the health department’s survey, said Stephanie Jamison, MHP’s organizational learning and development manager.
“The housing crisis is a health crisis,” Jamison said. “The survey indicates that 59 percent of respondents have recently participated in drug treatment,” Jamison said. “Providers need to make stable housing a central focus of their treatment and support services. No one should be discharged from an inpatient or residential treatment setting without a solid plan for stable housing.”
Kathy Laws (Family & Youth) was the recipient of the prestigious Dr. Robert H. Miller Award, given annually to one individual "who has made a long term commitment to the field and whose involvement, service and contributions to the improvement of the quality of life of persons with mental illness is noteworthy and exceptional." Kathy was recognized for her passion, advocacy, and trail-blazing efforts on behalf of Families and Youth.
MHP's programs are successful because our staff truly listen and respond to the needs of our participants. Check out “Anne & Ebony’s” story of how true partnership can be a life altering force.
We are so proud that over 60% of our staff have lived experience! Peer support means that our participants have access to individuals who understand their struggles, their choices, their victories! Check out our “I was YOU” video to meet some of the truly special individuals who help MHP make a difference in the lives of individuals who are walking their path to recovery.
"To fully understand the complexities of the growing opioid epidemic, we as a society must begin to engage one another without excluding those who are closest to the problem. People who are experiencing homelessness, active addiction from a substance use disorder and mental health challenges need to be at the table. We must consider those who are struggling with these challenges as subject matter experts when we invite them to the table to focus on solutions towards ending homelessness and with fighting the opioid epidemic in Philadelphia, such as exploring the expansion of low-barrier non-abstinence housing first programs."
Evan Figueroa-Vargas is a Board Member at Pathways to Housing PA, as well as a homeless service provider at Mental Health Partnerships.
When Darlene La Torre wakes up in the morning, there’s a good chance her husband of five years will want to kick off the day debating how to address the opioid crisis. And whether Philadelphia’s controversial proposal to open a supervised safe injection facility is a good idea.
Once at work, she’ll likely get an email or text from him linking to a study or article on the merits of such a site. When she gets home, she knows he’ll be poised to follow up. And if not then, then perhaps at 2 a.m.
“He wakes up and goes to the bathroom, and I just do the slightest move, and he’s like, ‘So yeah, I was thinking about this and that.’ And I’m like, ‘I’m trying to sleep right now!’ ” La Torre said.