White House Summit on Mental Health: Let's Make it Happen!
The Balanced Mind Parent Network members represent a broadly diverse population from all ethnicities, religions, socio-economic statuses, lifestyles, belief and value systems. Therefore, we do not allow members to post petitions, invitations or surveys about any political or religious issues, because this can easily divide us.
Over the past several days, we have received many inquiries regarding contacting D.C., signing petitions, and other political advocacy actions. Legislative advocacy is a very costly, time consuming activity. It takes much more than a few individual efforts; it must be very carefully coordinated to be effective. The Balanced Mind Parent Network does not have the resources to coordinate this in a meaningful way or with any real impact.
Instead, our legislative advocacy strategy is to partner with the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP). For the past decade, we have participated in the AACAP Advocacy Day where dozens of our families met with their legislative offices on The Hill. I attend the annual AACAP meeting and a bi-annual Child Mental Health Summit where several mental health advocacy groups come together to have greater impact. We have had board members with overlapping memberships on AACAP’s executive council and we have great respect for AACAP’s work.
Out of the tragedy in Newtown, CT, AACAP is urging the White House to convene a summit on children’s mental health, with the goal of developing a comprehensive national strategy for the prevention, identification, treatment and research of mental illnesses. This is very much within the mission of The Balanced Mind Parent Network. I urge you to contact your members of Congress here. The link will take you to a prepared email to your members of Congress. This is the best way we can come together to affect real change for our children. We need a national strategy so that our children will receive better care, better treatments, and a simplified process to access treatment.
Thank you for your participation!