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The State House in Montpelier was packed on Wednesday, January 29, 2020 as more than 200 advocates came together to recognize Mental Health Advocacy Day! It was a day spent sharing stories, offering testimonies, and calling on our Vermont leaders and legislators to “Support Your Community ~ Invest in Mental Health!”
A special thanks to our 47 co-sponsoring mental health organizations who promoted and participated in this event that was co-organized by NAMI Vermont, Vermont Care Partners,and the Vermont Association for Mental Health and Addiction Recovery.
Peter Mallary and Ed Paquin led an advocacy training and state leaders shared some welcoming statements, including Senate President Pro Tempore Tim Ashe, Secretary of Human Services Mike Smith, Speaker of the House Mitzi Johnson, Commissioner of Mental Health Sarah Squirrell and Lt. Governor David Zuckerman. Awards were presented and a proclamation was read from Governor Scott declaring January 29, 2020 as Mental Health Advocacy Day in Vermont.
This day-long event was an opportunity for people to offer testimony at key House and Senate committee meetings and have one-on-one conversations about mental health with their legislators. Everyone left the State House feeling energized, inspired and hopeful that our voices were heard by law makers. A very special thank you to everyone who attended – helping to make Mental Health Advocacy Day one of the best!
Testimony at key legislative committees – throughout the day
8:00 ~ Bagels and Coffee with Legislators (Cafeteria)
9:00 ~ Advocacy Training with Peter Mallary and Ed Paquin (Room 11)
9:40 ~ Team Two Awards (Room 11)
10:00 ~ Welcome Address from State Leaders (Room 11)
10:30 ~ Legislative Awards and Community Advocate Awards
11:00 ~ Sharing Stories, Insights, and Poems (Room 11)
Noon ~ Lunch with Legislators (Cafeteria) – NOTE: Lunch is on your own. You can bring your own lunch or buy something in the cafeteria.
1:00 ~ Introduction to the House (House Chamber)
2020 MENTAL HEALTH ADVOCACY DAY CO-SPONSORS:
Alyssum ~ Another Way ~ Blueprint for Health, Mental Health and Substance Abuse ~ Center for Health and Learning ~ Central Vermont Perinatal Mental Health Coalition ~ Champlain Community Services ~ Clara Martin Center (CMC) ~ Collaborative Solutions Corporation (Second Spring) ~ Counseling Service of Addison County (CSAC) ~ Disability Rights Vermont ~ Families First Inc. ~ Green Mountain Support Services ~ GunSense Vermont ~ Health Care and Rehabilitation Services (HCRS) ~ HowardCenter ~ Lamoille County Mental Health Services (LCMHS) ~ Lincoln Street ~ M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling – Weekend Format, at Northern Vermont University ~ Me2/Orchestra ~ NAMI Vermont ~ National Association of Social Workers-VT ~ NFI Vermont, Inc. ~ Northeast Kingdom Human Services (NKHS) ~ Northwestern Counseling and Support Services (NCSS) ~ Pathways Vermont ~ Postpartum Support International – Vermont (PSI VT) ~ Rutland Mental Health Services ~ Support and Services at Home (SASH) ~ Team Two ~ United Counseling Service of Bennington County, Inc. (UCS) ~ Upper Valley Services ~ Vermont Affordable Housing Coalition ~ Vermont Association for Mental Health and Addiction Recovery (VAMHAR) ~ Vermont Association of Hospitals and Health Systems (VAHHS) ~ Vermont Care Partners (Vermont Council of Developmental and Mental Health Services) ~ Vermont Center for Independent Living ~ Vermont Cooperative for Practice Improvement and Innovation ~ Vermont Department of Mental Health ~ Vermont Developmental Disabilities Council ~ Vermont Family Network ~ Vermont Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health ~ Vermont Mental Health Counselors Association ~ Vermont Psychiatric Association ~ Vermont Psychiatric Survivors ~ Vermont Psychological Association ~ Washington County Mental Health Services, Inc. (WCMHS)