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January 18, 2008

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee is scheduled to consider legislation to reauthorize the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) on January 30th.   The draft bill includes a package of important initiatives that NAMI has been working on for years, including:

  • Expansion of suicide prevention programs,
  • Prevention of custody relinquishment,
  • Services for homeless individuals with mental illness and
  • Efforts to further reduce the use of restraint and seclusion of young people.

Act Now!

One of your state’s U.S. Senators serves on the HELP Committee and it is now critical to contact their office to press them to support this draft SAMHSA reauthorization bill.  Call or email your Senator today, and urge them to vote in support of the reauthorization on January 30.


Call Instructions:

Find your Senator from the list below, and call the number:

State          Senator                               Telephone

AK

Lisa Murkowski      

202-224-6665

CO

Wayne Allard       

202-224-5941

CT 

Christopher Dodd  

202-224-2823

GA 

 Johnny Isakson

202-224-3646

IA

Tom Harkin

202-224-3254

IL

Barack Obama       

202-224-2854

KS

Pat Roberts         

202-224-4774

MA

Edward Kennedy

202-224-4543

MD

Barbara A. Mikulski  

202-224-4654

NC

Richard Burr

202-224-3154

NH

Judd Gregg

202-224-3324

NM

Jeff Bingaman

202-224-5521

NY

Hillary Rodham Clinton

202-224-4451

OK

Tom Coburn, MD

202-224-5754

OH

Sherrod Brown

202-224-2315

RI

Jack Reed

202-224-4642

TN

Lamar Alexander

202-224-4944

UT

Orrin G. Hatch

202-224-5251

VT

Bernard Sanders

202-224-5141

WA

Patty Murray

202-224-2621

WY

Micheal B. Enzi

202-224-3424


Talking Points

Remind your Senator that the SAMHSA Reauthorization bill includes the following critical provisions for children and adults living with mental illness and their families:

  • Renewal of expansion of the Garrett Lee Smith Act that support state and local efforts to replicate successful strategies for youth suicide prevention and college-based mental health programs,
  • The   Keeping Families Together Act (S 382) that authorizes planning grants for states to implement strategies designed to address the tragic and unnecessary policy of families relinquishing custody of a child in order to access mental health services,
  • The   Services for Ending Long-Term Homelessness Act (SELHA, S 593) that authorizes services in permanent supportive housing for individuals with mental illness and co-occurring disorders that have experienced chronic homelessness,
  • Efforts by Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) and others to expand federal efforts to curb the inappropriate use of restraint and seclusion, particularly for adolescents placed in juvenile facilities and correctional schools, and
  • Expanded requirements for states to collect data regarding expenditure of federal mental health block grant funds and their relationship to specific outcomes.


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