The Children’s Mental Health Local Advisory Council (LAC) increases awareness of mental health. Despite an increased understanding of the underlying biological basis to mental health disorders, individuals with mental health issues often face negative judgments or actions from others.
Reducing stigma has emerged as a public health priority and has been highlighted in the Surgeon General’s report on mental health, the President’s New Freedom Commission report (2003) and by the World health Organization (2001). The Surgeon General’s report states that in order to reduce the burden of mental illness, stigma must no longer be tolerated. Educational interventions look to replace inaccurate stereo-types with new information.
The Local Advisory Council is committed to combating stigma by identifying inaccurate stereo-types or stigmatizing language and offering information to educate persons communicating such misinformation. The attached Awareness letters are examples of responses that can be sent to individuals or organizations that have communicated in a way that is stigmatizing of people with mental health concerns. Please use these examples to draft letters in response to stigmatizing communication.
Awareness Letter #1
Awareness Letter #2