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from NAMI.org
Voice Awards Honor Advocates, Films and TV Shows NAMI recognizes the advocates, films and television shows that portray mental illness in a respectful way.
Howie Mandel: No Laughing Matter
YANA: Iím Not Crying For Your Attention
Criminalization of Mental Illness: Itís a Crime
-more at NAMI.org-
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Public Policy Update

March 21, 2014
Chris Bouneff, executive director

The 2014 Legislature closed up shop two weeks ago. And from NAMI's perspective, it was a benign session. Few policy bills that affected our world advanced, and the Legislature successfully adjusted the state budget without impacting mental health and addiction services.

One important development came when lawmakers gave their final blessing to spending $10 million on housing for individuals living with mental illness. You may recall that in the special session last fall, legislators approved an increase in Oregon's cigarette tax with proceeds dedicated to mental health programs. That tax is expected to generate about $10 million in additional funding this biennium.

The Oregon Health Authority, in consultation with NAMI and others, designated that money for housing. About $5 million will go toward rental subsidies and vouchers for those seeking immediate housing.

The other $5 million will be used to construct new housing around Oregon following NAMI Oregon's proposed housing investment fund model. You can read more about our proposal here: http://goo.gl/HCTB1L

This is the same proposal we put forward during the 2013 legislative session. However, funding wasn't allocated at the time, even though the legislation enjoyed wide support. The additional revenue from the cigarette tax made it possible to fund our proposal.

There will be plenty of work ahead to ensure that the money is allocated during the remaining months of this biennium. We should be able to put out more details after a final agreement is signed with the health authority that details the process by which housing projects will be evaluated and awarded funding.

2014 Public Policy Survey Results

NAMI member and allies overwhelmingly picked housing as their top priority in our recent public policy priorities survey. Click here to read the results and summary of the survey, which will be discussed at June's public policy meeting.

NAMI Oregon Releases Health Transformation Guide

Many Oregonians may still be puzzled by the term "health transformation," but the changes forthcoming in Oregon's Medicaid system could vastly improve health care in our state or just be another shot in the dark that fails to hit its intended target. NAMI Oregon has long advocated for an integrated health care system that focuses on individual and family health. To that end, NAMI Oregon is pleased to issue its "Policy Guide to Health Transformation and Integration in Oregon" that collects all of NAMI's various positions on health care transformation into one document. This will serve as our guiding vision for our advocacy on health care reform.

US DOJ Settlement with Oregon

The State of Oregon and the U.S. Department of Justice have reached an agreement pertaining to the federal governmentís investigation over how Oregon treats individuals with mental illness.  The crux of the investigation looked at whether Oregon was needlessly institutionalizing individuals in violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Read a press release announcing the agreement and a letter outlining the agreement.

To find contact information for your state legislators, visit the Oregon State Legislature's Find your legislator web page.

Please see previous Public Policy Updates below.

Previous Public Policy Updates

Stay involved with us - sign up for our e-news and legislative alerts, and click the links below to view minutes from Public Policy Committee meetings.

Tell us your story - if you have a personal story that illustrates the need for changes in statewide mental health policy and you would like to become an advocate for policy improvement, complete our Advocate Information Form and return it to us today.


Related Files

Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - August 2010 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - September 2010 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - November 2010 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - February 2011 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - March 2011 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - April 2011 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - May 2011 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - October 2011 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - November 2011 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - January 2012 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - February 2012 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - March 2012 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - June 2012 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - August 2012 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - November 2012 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - December 2012 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - January 2013 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - March 2013 (PDF File)
Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - December 2013 (PDF File)
Advocate Information Form (Word Document)
June 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
July 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
October 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
November 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
December 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
January 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
February 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
March 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
May 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
August 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
October 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
February 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
March 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
April 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
July 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
December 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
January 2014 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
March 2014 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
CCO Basics Fact Sheet (PDF File)
CCOs By County (PDF File)
DOJ Civil Agreement (PDF File)
2013 Legislative Priorities (PDF File)
Housing Bill Summary (PDF File)
Budget Fact Sheet (PDF File)
Medication Access Fact Sheet (PDF File)
Human Services and Housing Committee list (PDF File)
2014 Public Policy Survey (PDF File)

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