For 2017 Beach Cities Support Group Meets on the Last Monday of the Month

As of January 2017, the Beach Cities Support Group meets on the last Monday of the month at Baycities Southbay Church at 4915 Emerald Street in Torrance (on the corner of Victor and Emerald). Meetings are from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

NAMI Coverage4Care Survey

Survey Dollarphotoclub_53229363Do you or a loved one struggle to get the mental health care you need? Do you have insurance that covers the costs of your care? Take NAMI’s Coverage4Care survey and tell us about your experiences.

The survey takes about 20 minutes, and your answers will help NAMI advocate for better care and coverage for you and your loved ones. It doesn’t matter what type insurance you have, or whether you have insurance at all. NAMI wants to hear from you. Spread the word. Share this survey with your family and friends. Post links to your Facebook and Twitter.

The survey closes on Monday, December 14, 2015 at 8 p.m. Pacific Time. For more information see www.nami.org. Thank you for your help.

General Meeting Monday November 16 — 4th District Mental Health Policies

Mr. Richard Espinosa, the Health Deputy for Supervisor Don Knabe of the County of Los Angeles Fourth District, will speak at the 7:30 p.m. General Meeting of NAMI South Bay. Mr. Espinosa reviews policy recommendations and serves as the 4th District’s liaison on health related matters regarding Los Angeles County. He will provide a review of the state of mental health issues and he will hear from the NAMI South Bay members of our concerns regarding mental health. This meeting is a great opportunity to become educated and to advocate on mental health issues.

Mr. Espinosa joined Supervisor Knabe’s staff after spending 17 years with the County Department of Health Services in a number of administrative capacities. He is a graduate of Pomona College and the University of Southern California’s School of Public Administration. He is also the founder and one-time chairman of an interdepartmental task force responsible for creating the County’s Office of Small Business. On October 14, 1998 he was the recipient of the Los Angeles County Quality and Productivity Award.

First Lutheran ChurchThe general meeting will be preceded by the 6 p.m. Caring and Sharing Support Group–a support group for family members to discuss anything pertaining to the care, management or treatment of their loved ones, as well as the family members’ and caretakers’ own well being.

The Caring and Sharing Support Group and the Speaker Meeting will both be held in Faith Hall at the First Lutheran Church 2900 Carson in Torrance.

Parking is available in the parking lot off of Carson Street and on Carson Street and Flower Avenue.

General Meeting October 19 — Coordination, Emergency Outreach, and Mental Evaluation Teams

LAC_DMH_Antelope_Valley_MHC_1786130Our next regular General Meeting will be Monday, October 19, 2015, beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Faith Hall at the First Lutheran Church in Torrance. NAMI South Bay will have a panel of three guests for Monday evening’s meeting: Pam Pasillas of the Emergency Outreach Bureau (EOB) of Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (LACDMH), Sergeant Carol Wilk of the Torrance Mental Evaluation Team (Torrance MET), and a member of the Gardena/Hawthorne Mental Evaluation Team (GH-MET).

The panel will discuss the field-based mental health services teams combining police and mental health professionals in our area. Important information will be presented about what these teams do and how to work with them.

First Lutheran ChurchThe general meeting will be preceded by the Caring and Sharing Support Group, a support group for family members to discuss anything pertaining to the care, management or treatment of their loved ones, as well as the family members’ and caretakers’ own well being.

Parking is available in the parking lot off of Carson Street and on Carson Street and Flower Avenue.

Early Bird Special Savings! 2015 Annual State Conference

Register now for big savings! Early Bird registration ends soon!

Friday and Saturday
August 21 – 22, 2015
Newport Beach, CA

Click here to take advantage of the lowest rates for the conference.

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The Workshops will feature:

Transitional Aged Youth (T.A.Y.) Workshops will focus on strategies and best practices for educators, early identification and intervention, and reducing stigma and discrimination for ages 18-24.

Criminal Justice. Workshops will focus on strategies around incorporating and partnering with the law enforcement, the Justice system, and other criminal justice sectors.

Strengthening NAMI. Workshops will focus on best practices in Board development, organizational financial management, and expanding access to NAMI education programs through technology.

Consumer and Family Engagement/Recovery Practices. Workshops will focus on strengthening our voice as a unified organization of lived experiences, increase visibility and impact, and promote mental health wellness and recovery.

Advocacy. Workshops will focus on new and innovative ways to advocate, current policies and their impact on all levels (local, state and nation wide), and training tools to effectively utilize grassroots advocacy efforts.

Diversity. Workshops will be focused on strength-based approaches and best practices to engage diverse communities, increase access to programs and services, and reduce the stigma and discrimination among diverse populations.

Hotel information

The Marriott Hotel and Spa is located directly across from Fashion Island and only 10 minutes from the John Wayne Airport. CLICK HERE for special rates of $169, plus tax per night. To receive this discounted rate you must make your reservation by August 5th or call (877) 622-3056 to speak with reservations.

cfd0c7dd-8a24-48fb-a51d-842544bc1d32Marriott Newport Beach Hotel and Spa
900 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, California 92660

Looking Forward to 2015

By Mary Giliberti, J.D., NAMI Executive Director

It’s no secret that NAMI wants to build a broad movement to improve the lives of all people affected by mental illness. In 2014, I could feel the movement growing, especially in trips to meet with grassroots NAMI leaders in such diverse states such as Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Montana, Tennessee and Texas. The energy and commitment of NAMI volunteers is always impressive—and essential to the future.

Taken together, many developments in 2014 provide a foundation for 2015 and years ahead. The challenge is to keep building on these opportunities.

· Philanthropist Ted Stanley donated $650 million to the Broad Institute for brain research to potentially develop new treatments. In the words of NAMI’s medical director, Ken Duckworth, it is a new “ ground-breaker” for scientific research on mental illness. Medical science is a cornerstone for NAMI’s commitment to improve the lives of individuals and families affected by mental illness.

· USA Today launched a special series, The Cost of Not Caring , about the inadequate mental health care system which inspired dialogue in communities around the country. NAMI worked closely on the series, helping identify people affected by the issues so their personal stories could educate readers.

· Diverse faith communities increased their focus on the need to help people find treatment for mental health problems. The most dramatic event was “The Gathering” of religious leaders and mental health experts organized by the Saddleback Church, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange and NAMI Orange County that provided a nationally significant model for outreach.

· The call for Congress to pass mental health care legislation increased. NAMI sponsored aNational Day of Action in which recording artist and actress Demi Lovato participated, amplifying our voice. NAMI also published a state legislative report for 2014, gathering all of the mental health legislation that passed in the past year. We will be continuing our efforts at the state and federal level to meet the objectives of our new strategic plan and address issues such as homelessness, criminalization of people with mental illness, early intervention and treatment, and the needs of service men and women, veterans and their families.

· Along with others, NAMI won an important victory by defeating proposed restrictions on access to medications under Medicare Part D. Protection of shared decision-making by doctors and individuals is a key NAMI value and we will continue our efforts to ensure access to treatment that works.

· Attention increased this year on the need to end the criminalization of mental illness. NAMI helped shape the debate with its call for nationwide expansion of crisis intervention teams (CIT). In 2015, NAMI, the Council of State Governments, the National Association of Counties and others will build on this momentum by launching an unprecedented campaign to lower the number of people with mental illnesses in jails by improving access to effective mental health and co-occurring substance use treatment.

· Major inroads were made with youth and young adults through the NAMI on Campus program, with 85 active clubs on campuses across the country and 240 in the process of being formed. Additionally, NAMI’s Raising Mental Health Awareness on College Campuses toolkit was sent to more than 300 campus communities. Young adults leading these groups and activities are NAMI leaders of the future!

Every movement has many different centers of energy, creativity and commitment. Both large and small events converge to form greater waves of change. Looking back on 2014, are there trends or events that you think provide hope, inspiration or opportunities for the future?

Do you have ideas you want to share for 2015?

Please feel free to share them with me at executivedirector@nami.org. I may not be able to reply individually, but I can promise to read every message personally.

In the meantime, best wishes for the holidays and the New Year. Thank you for all you do on behalf of people living with mental illness and their families!

Los Angeles Readies Itself to Implement Laura’s Law

As previously reported, Los Angeles County leaders voted in July to fully implement Laura’s Law (AB 1421), a state statute that gives counties the option to pursue court-ordered outpatient treatment for people with serious mental illness. Los Angeles County launched a small outpatient treatment program soon after Laura’s Law took effect in 2003, but that program was purely voluntary. Now, the supervisors voted 4 to 0, with Don Knabe absent, to expand the existing outpatient treatment program from 20 to 300 slots and create a team that will reach out to potential patients and manage the court filing process when necessary.

Once implemented, which will take place over the foreseeable weeks, Laura’s Law will:

  • Permit people who are severely disabled by mental illness–and currently caught in a revolving door of homelessness, incarceration, and hospitalization–to receive timely, continuous, and supervised treatment in the community.
  • Safeguard the public and the person, by allowing families and mental health professionals to petition for “assisted outpatient treatment” for individuals incapacitated by mental illness before they become a danger to themselves or others.
  • Protect the rights of the individual by requiring court approval of the petition to provide “assisted outpatient treatment” to assure that it is applied only to those who are so severely disabled by mental illness that they are unable to stay in treatment without help and supervision.
  • Authorize “assisted outpatient treatment” orders lasting up to 180 days and, when appropriate, the renewal of them.
    Provide those under orders with intensive, supervised mental health treatment in the community until they are capable of maintaining their own psychiatric care and recovery
  • Reduce county expenditures on law enforcement interaction, judicial, jail, and crisis services.

There have been positive results in a growing number of counties in California. If you are concerned or interested in how Laura’s Law will actually function, you can see a Functional Outline of the law by CLICKING HERE.