News & Announcements

Tribal Members Walk to Shed Light on Suicide

Posted: September 20, 2014

Willeena George carried a poster Friday featuring a picture of her son, Domonique Nappo, as she walked with roughly 200 others in the Yakama Nation’s inaugural suicide awareness walk. Nappo took his life in 2008. He was only 16.

George shared her story of loss and pain at the public event at the Yakama Nation RV park just west of Toppenish. A lunch, balloon release and a suicide prevention workshop were the highlights as people learned to identify and respond to signs of suicide risk.

Other tribes held similar walks across the country in conjunction with National Suicide Prevention Week, which is the Monday through Sunday surrounding World Suicide Prevention Day on Sept. 10.

Katherine Saluskin, manager of the tribe’s suicide prevention program, was surprised at the turnout. “I think it’s really good that everyone is out here,” Saluskin said. “In our culture, it’s kind of taboo to talk about it.”


Peer Support in Mental Health: Exploitive, Transformative, or Both?

Posted: September 18, 2014

The following is an excerpt from an article written by Larry Davidson, PhD on

The first time I tried to write about peer support—that emerging form of “service delivery” in which one person in recovery from what is described in the field as a “serious mental illness” offers support to another person who is in distress or struggling with a mental health condition—was in 1994. The manuscript was summarily rejected from an academic journal as representing what one of the reviewers described as “unsubstantiated rot.” That same article was eventually published 5 years later,1 and used by the President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health to support its recommendation that peer supports be implemented across the country.2 Now, more than a decade later and as peer support arrives at something of a crossroads, both of these reactions remain instructive.

First, there continues to be a large, unmet need for peer support across the country. Over thirty states have already secured Medicaid reimbursement for peer support, and many other states have found ways to fund peer support without Medicaid. Yet there remains a tremendous need for people to receive the message that recovery is real and possible for them, and to benefit from the support peers can provide. At the same time, there remain influential people in mental health systems (and government) who continue to think that peer support—along with anything else related to the concept of “recovery”—is nothing more than “unsubstantiated rot.” Perhaps this situation is no different from that of the diffusion of other innovations in medicine or society at large—like the transition from horse drawn carriages to cars—but it strikes me as an important consideration in deciding the future of peer support. And that is what I would like to address in this piece.


“In My Own Words” Video Message Contest for Individuals in Recovery from Addiction or Mental Illness

Posted: September 17, 2014

The Addictiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) Network Coordinating Office announces the 2014 “In My Own Words…” Video Message Contest. In partnership with Faces & Voices of Recovery and Young People in Recovery, the ATTC contest invites individuals in recovery from addiction and/or mental illnesses to share why they want to speak up and reach out about their recovery. All entries must be received by midnight, Central Standard Time, on October 15, 2014. Video message submissions must be no longer than 60 seconds..

Learn more about the contest.

Crafting an Advocacy Agenda for Black Gay Men in the U.S. South

Posted: September 16, 2014

If black gay men in the U.S. South had an agenda for achieving a life free from stigma and discrimination, what would be on it? What are the issues that must be confronted to make progress toward equality? The webinar We Are Here: Toward an Advocacy Agenda for Black Gay Men in the South, presented by HIV Prevention Justice Alliance, brought together select voices to try to answer these questions and more. Presenters on the webinar pointed out that black gay men in the South -- and around the country -- are burdened with mass incarceration, poverty, unemployment, stigma and discrimination. In order to level the playing ground and make strides toward ending certain policies that contribute to these burdens, the webinar presenters stressed the need to organize and take action on several key issues.


Hispanic Heritage Month is Sep 15-Oct 15

Posted: September 15, 2014

National Hispanic Heritage Month is September 15 – October 15, 2014, the theme for this year is – “Hispanics: A legacy of history, a present of action and a future of success”. 

According to the Library of Congress, "National Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates and recognizes the contributions Hispanic Americans have made to American society and culture and to honor five of our Central American neighbors who celebrate their Independence days in September." The Library of Congress provides a full history of presidential proclamations commemorating this time of observation.

Visit the Office of Minority Health (OMH) website to download resources. Visit the OMH Spanish Language Website.

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