Thursday, 21 June 2018



Community Gives On-Line Prize Winners!

Thank You Many LanguagesThank you to everyone who donated to during our on-line Community Gives week (and beyond!). A special thank you and congrats to our prize winners:

$50 Amazon Gift Card: Luke P from Great Barrington, MA

$30 Barnes & Noble Gift Card: Audrey H from Somerville, MA

$100 Spafinder Gift Card: Alison B from South Hadley, MA

$50 Bath & Body Works Gift Card: Phyllis S from Granby, MA

$35 Dunkin Donuts Gift Card: Vanessa H from Shrewsbury, MA

$100 Darden Gift Card: Laura C from Northampton, MA

$50 Target Gift Card: Tom R from Hamden, CT

Alternative Perspectives Series

Save the Dates!

In past years, we have hosted Alternative Perspectives Series that have been largely film-based. This time round, we’re starting out with a series of live presentations and sending them to the most commonly neglected spot in Western Mass: The Berkshires!

The Alternative Perspectives Series is designed to bring together people from all parts of our community (those who provide services and those who have received them, peer supporters, family and friends, students, and the broader community). The hope is that they will have time and space to consider new ideas, and talk about how they might apply to their community.

Robert WhitakerRufus and Elisabeth
The series will kick off in March and run into next fall.

Each session will be free and open to the public.

We will also plan to offer Continuing Education Credits.

The first two events are as follows:
Psychiatry Under the Influence
with Robert Whitaker
Friday, March 25th, 1 to 4pm
Voice Dialoguing
with Rufus May and Elisabeth Svanholmer
Thursday, May 26th, 1 to 4pm
(Also to be held in the Holyoke area and Framingham)


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  • The Murphy Bills and Beyond

    In June of 2015, Representative Tim Murphy of Pennsylvania re-introduced the "Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act" (HR 2646), better known as the Murphy Bill.  A month later, Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut introduced a very similar bill in the Senate called the "Mental Health Reform Act of 2015" (S2680).  Both pieces of legislation threatened to dramatically increase the use of force and dismantle many of the more progressive and healing alternatives that have been developed in recent years. As of November 2016 the fate of both bills remained uncertain.

    Meanwhile, another piece of legislation called 21st Century Cures was in development and garnering increasing bipartisan support. A sweeping and expansive healthcare bill, 21st Century Cures was, initially, minimally focused on mental health provisions. Having been stalled in part due to resistance from Senate Democrats' concerns that the bill was dangerously empowering for the pharmaceutical industry, 21st Century Cures also faced an uncertain fate in November. However, the election of President Trump and consequent fears for the bill’s fate prompted a reworking of the bill that also included the absorption of many aspects of HR 2646, “Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis.”

    21st Century Cures was passed by the House and Senate on November 30th and December 7th of last year, respectively. On December 13, 21st Century Cures (now including substantial portions drawn directly from HR 2646, "Helping Familties in Mental Health Crisis") was signed into law by President Obama. 



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