In this issue, we start with recognizing and honoring the life of Russell Hudlemeyer, activist for healthcare and disability rights and Executive Director of Berkeley Place, a longtime CASRA member agency. His memorial gathering will take place virtually on Saturday, January 22nd at 10 AM, Pacific Time. The link to the gathering is provided.
Elswhere in the newsletter, we follow one person's lonely journey from homelessness to housing. Also, there is the opportunity to increase our awareness, understanding, and ability to help a stranger in need. There is a new California law that adds mental health to high school health curriculums. Finally, we look at the concept of COVID guilt, and how to free ourselves of it when we test positive.
Our spotlight is on CASRA member agency, Buckelew Programs who began a new service in Sonoma County called inRESPONSE. The program provides a multidisciplinary team response to individuals experiencing a mental health health crisis. For more info, visit the Buckelew website.
As always, we welcome your feedback. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Who We Are
CASRA is a statewide organization of private, not-for-profit, public benefit corporations that serve clients of the California public mental health system.
Member agencies provide a variety of services that are designed to enhance the quality of life and community participation of youth, adults and older adults living with challenging mental health issues.
One man’s lonely journey through California’s plan to end homelessness
by Jackie Botts, January 17, 2022
California’s pandemic response marked the start of Maya’s journey indoors. Through Project Roomkey, the statewide effort to take vulnerable and elderly people off the street, he was given the keys to a hotel room of his own that June. Later, Maya would credit the program — and Gov. Gavin Newsom — with having ended his homelessness.
Over the course of a five-month stay at a hip West Hollywood hotel, Soria helped Maya renew his application for a federal housing program for veterans, in an apartment complex with 90 affordable units set aside for people experiencing homelessness.
By September, his application was approved. The state would claim Maya as a successful transition into permanent housing — on paper at least. Read More
How to help a stranger on the street in a mental health crisis
From the LA Times
Faith E. Pinho, January 19, 2022
You’re walking down the street, and you encounter someone crying.
Or perhaps the person seems worked up in another way — screaming at the air or rocking back and forth in distress.
A disquieting feeling follows. Do you attempt to say something? Call emergency services? Or, perhaps the likeliest option, avert your eyes, cross the street and keep moving?
It’s not an easy situation to confront. And yet, how to help someone in mental health distress — whether a stranger or a friend — is an essential question in California. Read More
New law on mental health curriculum goes into effect with start of the new year
January 10, 2022
Health classes in California high schools will soon cover more than nutrition and exercise. Thanks to a new law that went into effect Jan. 1, students will learn about depression, schizophrenia, mood disorders and other serious mental health conditions.
Senate Bill 224 requires all school districts that offer health classes to include mental health as part of the curriculum. The California Department of Education has until Jan. 1, 2023 to incorporate mental health into the state standards, and districts have until Jan. 1, 2024 to begin teaching the new material. Read More
‘How many people did I get sick?’ Testing positive for COVID-19 can bring feelings of guilt and shame
From the Chicago Tribune
Alison Brown, January 6, 2022
She’d thought through the travel for the holiday carefully. Working remotely, limiting activities to school-related outings and curbing any other possibility for exposure.
And still, the second day of the trip, Christine Hutchinson’s nose felt sniffily. She thought it was related to travel, or simply being a Chicagoan: “Our noses run.”
But when other people within the friend group her family had traveled with internationally also began feeling ill, she took a test. It came back positive for COVID-19. Read More
CBHA is excited to host "Reimagining the Behavioral Health Workforce: Promoting Health Equity Through Access to Care" on January 24th, 2022, from 9 AM - 3:30 PM PST. This Virtual Policy Forum gives attendees the opportunity to engage with policymakers and leaders in the behavioral health arena and discuss issues of concern, including youth behavioral health, the opioid epidemic, homelessness, and the behavioral health workforce crisis. Learn More and Register
Patricia E. Deegan Ph.D.
The Dignity of Risk and the Duty to Care
February17, 2022, 10:00-11:00a.m. PST
Choice and self-determination are foundational principles of recovery-oriented practice. But if a person is making a choice that steers their life away from recovery, how should staff respond? Patricia E. Deegan, PhD, an internationally renowned speaker and founder of Pat Deegan & Associates, provides training to help you answer this question and others related to the topic. Learn More and Register
"Cowardice asks the question, is it safe? Expediency asks the question, is it politic? Vanity asks the question, is it popular? But conscience asks the question, is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but one must take it because it is right."