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President Obama Applauds Commitments to Raise Awareness and Increase Understanding of Mental Health at White House Conference

submitted June 03, 2013 by Matthew Ellis   |   comments
<h1>President Obama Applauds Commitments to Raise Awareness and Increase Understanding of Mental Health at White House Conference</h1>

The White House
Office of the Press Secretary


For Immediate Release June 03, 2013

FACT SHEET: President Obama Applauds Commitments to Raise Awareness and Increase Understanding of Mental Health at White House Conference


Today, at the National Conference on Mental Health, the President applauded the dozens of commitments made by organizations representing media, educators, health care providers, faith communities, and foundations to increase understanding and awareness of mental health.

[T]he National Conference on Mental Health is designed to increase understanding and awareness of mental health. As part of this effort, today the Administration is launching mentalhealth.gov, a new, consumer-friendly website with clear and concise tools to help with the basics of mental health, the signs of mental illness, how to talk about mental health, and how to get help. The website also includes a series of videos featuring celebrities and ordinary Americans whose lives have been touched by mental illness.

Recognizing that the government cannot do this alone, the Administration applauds commitments from private sector and non-profit organizations, including in five key areas:

1) Launching new efforts to raise public awareness through television, radio, social media campaigns, and other platforms.

2) Teaching students about mental health and helping adults who work with youth recognize early signs of mental health problems and refer kids to treatment.

3) Giving health care providers the tools they need to screen for mental health problems and encouraging them to lead efforts to raise awareness in their communities.

4) Convening experts, philanthropic and civic leaders to identify innovative ways to reduce negative attitudes and perceptions about mental illness and improve access to treatment at the local level.

5) Launching new conversations in our houses of worship and other faith-based institutions to help people recognize mental health problems and access the treatment they need.

Faith groups from across the country have committed to launch new conversations on mental health by taking steps such as:

  • Including a message about mental health in a worship service or other event, and providing congregants with bulletin inserts on mental health issues.

  • Developing and disseminating toolkits with resources such as discussion starters to help members continue the conversation about mental health outside of worship services.

  • Organizing a session on mental health awareness at an upcoming national conference.

Denominations and faith groups that  are pledging to take action in their community as part of a national dialogue include:  African Methodist Episcopal Church Connectional Health Commission; American Association of Pastoral Counselors; American Muslim Health Professionals; Catholic Charities USA; Church of God in Christ; Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; Interfaith Network on Mental Illness; Islamic Relief USA; Lutheran Services in America; National Baptist Convention, USA, Incorporated; National Episcopal Health Ministries; Pathways to Promise; The Potter’s House; Progressive National Baptist Convention; The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism; The Samaritan Institute; Seventh-Day Adventist Church – North American Division; Sikh Council on Religion and Education; United Church of Christ; United Methodist Church; United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

For a complete list of commitments from private sector and non-profit groups, click HERE.