Each May, we join NAMIs around the country and other organizations in marking Mental Health Awareness Month. Awareness is where it all starts. It doesn’t stop there! Each week, we will share information and resources and opportunities for you to share your voice and take action to support advocacy efforts to help improve the lives of individuals and families impacted by mental health conditions.
Learn and Get Support: Information and Resources
Information and Resources
California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) CalAIM Webinar
Monday, May 3 at 2 pm PT. The second of two public hearings regarding California’s request to renew and amend its Section 1115 demonstration, renamed the CalAIM demonstration. The purpose of this hearing is to provide an overview of the demonstration proposal and accept comments prior to its submission to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
“Why TD Matters” Virtual Event
Wednesday, May 5 at 10 am PT. NAMI CA is a proud cohosting partner of the event to mark Tardive Dyskinesia Awareness Week.
3rd Annual Mental Health Symposium
Thursday, May 6 at 11:30 am PT. Community event by FundaMental Change and Los Angeles Mission College.
2021 Virtual Children’s Mental Health Spring Advocacy Day
Monday, May 17, 8 am to 4:30 pm PT. NAMI California is joining the California Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (CALACAP) and Children Now in presenting for this virtual event. This is a chance to join fellow mental health community members to discuss important issues with State legislators and their staff. It also serves as a great opportunity to combine your voice with the voices of people from other organizations to support common legislative goals.
NAMI California Youth and Family Programs Info Sessions
May 18 3:30 to 4:30 pm PT or May 20, 3:30 to 4:30 pm PT
Join NAMI California for an info session to learn about the programs we have to support families and youth. These programs can be utilized as a means of education or support for you and your loved ones. (Note: The same presentation will be given on both dates, so please choose one date you would like to attend.)
NAMI California Town Hall Meeting: Tobacco-Free Recovery
Tuesday, May 18, 10 am to 12 pm. NAMI California presents a Town Hall Meeting on tobacco-free recovery, with guests Dr. Gary Tedeschi of the University of California-San Diego School of Medicine, Moores Cancer Center, and Catherine Saucedo and Dr. Steve Schroeder of the Smoking Cessation Leadership Center, University of California San Francisco. Only 1 in 4 community behavioral health facilities offer tobacco cessation services, and even fewer utilize nicotine replacement therapy (NRTs) and other pharmacological supports. Do you know what services are available and most effective for assisting individuals with mental illness who want to stop using tobacco? This presentation will uncover the hidden epidemic of tobacco’s deadly toll on the behavioral health community, including the tobacco industry’s target marketing tactics. It will introduce you to the California Smokers’ Helpline, a free service to help people quit smoking, vaping and chewing tobacco and explain the available services, what to expect when reaching out, and how the program helps people quit.
Take Action: Advocacy Opportunities
Senate Bill 224 (Portantino) will provide California students in grades 1-12 with the mental health education they need. State Senator Anthony J. Portantino introduced SB 224 to require that all students in California receive age-appropriate mental health education. The bill, which NAMI California co-sponsored, ensures that students in grades 1 and 12 will receive mental health education from a qualified instructor at least one time during elementary school, one time during middle school, and one time during high school. Find out more about the legislation and read NAMI CA’s letter of support and sign our petition in support of SB 224.
Assembly Bill 1065 (Maienschein) will help improve the outcomes of crisis calls involving law enforcement and people who are mentally ill. Assembly Member Brian Maienschein introduced AB 1065 to create a Mental Health Help Program that aids in training law enforcement officers to assist, and engage safely with, people living with a mental illness and allows taxpayers to make voluntary contributions to the fund on their California tax returns. Find out more about the legislation and read NAMI CA’s letter of support and sign our petition in support of SB 1065
Assembly Bill 1331 (Irwin) will ensure that individuals experiencing a behavioral health crisis get the right care, in the right place, at the right time. Assembly Member Jacqui Irwin introduced AB 1331 to establish a new position at the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) to focus on establishing and monitoring a comprehensive crisis care system that ensures Californians receive the care they deserve in the most expedient way possible. NAMI California is a co-sponsor of this bill with The California Hospital Association. Find out more about the legislation and read NAMI CA’s letter of support and sign our petition in support of SB 1331
Submit your comments on the California Advancing and Innovating Medi-Cal (CalAIM) Section 1115 Demonstration and Waiver. The California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) is seeking to make changes to improve the delivery and outcomes of Medi-Cal Specialty Mental Health Services for people living with serious, disabling mental health conditions and is requesting federal authority necessary to implement California Advancing & Innovating Medi-Cal (CalAIM). CalAIM recognizes the opportunity to move California’s whole-person care approach — first authorized by the Medi-Cal 2020 Section 1115 demonstration — to a statewide level, with a clear focus on improving health and reducing health disparities and inequities. This will improve health outcomes for Medi-Cal beneficiaries for those who need it most. Read NAMI CA’s letter to DHCS on CalAIM. Submit your comments during the DHCS 30-day public comment period via email and written correspondence, as well as during two public webinars scheduled for April 26 and May 3 (register); DHCS will host a separate hearing for Tribal public comments on April 30. Additional information, including the proposed CalAIM Section 1115 demonstration renewal application and Section 1915(b) overview, how to submit public comments, and how to participate in a public hearing, is available on the CalAIM 1115 Demonstration & 1915(b) Waiver webpage. The public comment period concludes on May 6.
Spotlight: Crisis Response and Services
Learn about and sign our petition in support of Assembly Bill 1065 to help improve the outcomes of crisis calls involving people who are mentally ill. AB 1065 would allow taxpayers to make voluntary contributions on their California tax returns to support much-needed law enforcement training programs to better equip them to engage safely with individuals living with a mental illness. NAMI California’s Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program is a national model for community policing that brings together law enforcement, mental health providers, hospital emergency departments, and individuals with mental illness and their families to aid and improve law enforcement’s response to those experiencing a mental health crisis. Individuals, families, and our communities will all benefit from this much-needed program.
Learn about and sign our petition in support of Assembly Bill 1331 to establish a new position at the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) to improve our crisis care system. People in a behavioral health crisis too often face arrest, involuntary detention, multiple hospitalizations, homelessness, and even early death. In many communities, behavioral health crisis services are delivered too late — either by law enforcement or in hospital emergency departments. Too few people get the intensive follow-up care needed to prevent a crisis from recurring. A new position at the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) would focus on establishing and monitoring a comprehensive crisis care system and ensure that individuals experiencing a behavioral health crisis get the right care, in the right place, at the right time.
Find out about Assembly Bill 988 to establish the “9-8-8” emergency response system for Californians experiencing a mental health crisis.
Spotlight: Mental Health Education
Learn about and sign out petition in support of a bill we have co-sponsored, Senate Bill 224 (Portantino) to provide California students in grades 1-12 with the mental health education they need. State Senator Anthony J. Portantino introduced SB 224 to require that all students in California receive age-appropriate mental health education. The bill ensures that students in grades 1 and 12 will receive mental health education from a qualified instructor at least one time during elementary school, one time during middle school, and one time during high school. Read NAMI CA’s letter of support and sign our petition in support of SB 224.
Take our 30-Second Survey on mental health education. Have you or someone you loved had mental health challenges as a youth? What kind of impact do you think would result from students in grades 1-12 receiving mental health education in schools?
Spotlight: Words Matter
- Share your voice with our 30-second survey on supportive things to say (or not to say) about mental health. Then share your experiences with stigma.
- Learn about mental health stigma and take NAMI’s pledge to be stigma-free.
- Send a thank you message: Is there someone who has helped you feel supported in your mental health journey? If you live with a mental health condition or have a loved one living with mental illness, you know that support from loved ones is essential. Sign our virtual card to thank someone who has helped you know you’re not alone!
- More time? Answer more survey questions!