NAMI
National Alliance on Mental Illness
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NAMI Metropolitan Baltimore

Kate Farinholt from NAMI Metro Baltimore reports that they have again updated their guide, Beyond Punishment. The best way to access the most recent version is through the NAMI Metro Baltimore Web site. There are two versions of the guide – one easily downloaded and printed from their website for free, and a bound version for sale on Amazon.com.

The guide is designed to be used as a template, and is clearly marked with sections that have generalizable national information, state-specific info, and local-specific info. NAMI Metro Baltimore is happy to have other organizations use the guide as a template, as long as they reference their source, and let NAMI Metro Baltimore know their plans. NAMI Metro Baltimore also has a relationship with the graphic designer who did their design/format, and that person is happy to help design revised versions – her price is very reasonable.

NAMI Metro Baltimore has already used the booklet to help them develop partnerships with decision makers that they hadn't previously been able to partner with. They invited judges, lawyers and mental health providers to be part a team that wrote and edited the guide. The group determined the content, a few people took on the writing, and then edited as a group. This allowed the partners to really take ownership over the document, and as a consequence, the new partners were also eager to help distribute the guide. The guide is being distributed through homeless shelters, parole officers, public defenders and others because of these partnerships. Kate estimates that NAMI Metro Baltimore gained 100 new individual or organizational partners through this process. She recommends that any other state or local NAMI that wants to use the guide as a template should follow this same kind of process and get their local criminal justice/mental health partners involved.

From: CIT in Action - November 2009

 

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