Date: October 23, 2017

For Immediate Release

Contact: Glenn Liebman, CEO
John Richter, Director of Public Policy

Cell: 518-360-7916
Office: 518-434-0439

E-mail: gliebman@mhanys.org
jrichter@mhanys.org

New York Advocacy Organization Issues Mental Health Education Report

The Mental Health Association in New York State, Inc. (MHANYS) has released
a policy report on teaching elementary, middle and high school students
about mental health. MHANYS is a mental health advocacy organization that
was instrumental in the passage of law, signed by the Governor last year
that will require schools in New York to begin including instruction about
mental health as part of the school health curriculum beginning July 1,
2018.

The report provides a framework for understanding the need to increase
mental health literacy in society. Mental Health Literacy extends the
concept of Health Literacy and addresses knowledge and beliefs about mental
disorders which aid their recognition, management or prevention. Studies
show that increased mental health literacy helps people recognize emerging
signs and symptoms and facilitates help-seeking behavior.

Mental health problems are common, but only about 40 percent of people with
a mental illness ever receive treatment, and half of those who do wait an
average of 10 years from the time they begin experiencing symptoms before
getting help. The new law will assure that young people in New York will
receive the kind of information needed to act early on emerging mental
health challenges. Like most illnesses, timely treatment increases the
prospect of recovery and helps people avoid a host of other problems,
including the tragedy of suicide, that often accompany a failure to get
help.

The report also includes recommendations and guidance for policy makers and
schools on topics of study that could be included in school health
curricula. “We’re thankful to the New York State Legislature and Governor
for making this new requirement a reality, said MHANYS CEO Glenn Liebman,
“and we’re committed to preserving the legislative intent of the law
throughout the implementation process.” The report is intended to help
facilitate that implementation and to also inform the public about this
critical issue and why it’s so important to begin teaching this subject
early in life.

For a copy of the report please visit www.mhanys.org.

The Mental Health Association in New York State, Inc. (MHANYS) is a not
for profit organization comprised of 26 affiliates in 50 counties
throughout New York State. The mission of MHANYS is to promote mental
health and recovery, eliminate discrimination, and raise public awareness
with education and support.

Glenn Liebman, CEO

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