Talking Points and Asks
                                                       • Mental health parity                                                             2
                                                       • Federal opportunities                                                            2
                                                       • Mental health decriminalization                                                  3
                                                       • Workforce development                                                            3
                                                       • Funding for Mental Health                                                      4-6
                                                          • Military & Veterans                                                           4
                                                          • Children & Youth                                                              5
                                                          • Affordable Housing                                                            6
                                                          • Caregivers                                                                    6

                                                 YOU MAY ALSO CONTACT:
15TH ANNUAL NAMIWALKS GEORGIA                    Kim H. Jones — NAMI Georgia, Inc. — Co-Chair • (678) 687-2948 or
                                                 Diane Marinelli — Mental Health America of Georgia — Co-Chair • (678) 314-1017 or

   Join us at Clark Atlanta University
     on Saturday, October 5, 2019                      TO LEARN MORE, VISIT WWW.NAMIGA.ORG.
   and walk for mental health for all!
             To register and donate,             THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2019
    please visit      6 - 8:30PM NAMI GEORGIA – Dinner and Advocacy Training
                                                 		         4120 Presidential Parkway, Suite 200 Atlanta GA 30340
Questions? Contact Rachel Barber, Walk Manager   FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2019
          at               Behavioral Health Services Coalition (BHSC) Mental Health Day at the Capitol
                                                 The event begins at The GA Freight Depot located at 65 MLK Jr. Dr., Atlanta, GA 30334
                                                 (see map on page 3) then we will head to the Capitol
                                                 7:30 AM      Volunteers needed to show up for event set-up
                                                 8:00 AM      Behavioral Health Services Coalition (BHSC) Mental Health Day at the Capitol
                                                 		           A light breakfast will be served on a limited first-come, first-served basis.
                                                 		           Please plan to arrive early if you desire to eat.
                                                 		           Local mental health leaders will then address group on key topics.
                                                 10:45 PM     Head to the Capitol to meet with legislators
                          YOUR GA GENERAL ASSEMBLY                                                                                                INFORMATION & DIRECTIONS

                                                                                                                                                             FROM THE SOUTH: Take I-75/85 North to Exit 245 (Capitol Avenue). At the end of
         KNOW NAMI GEORGIA’S KEY POINTS                         BE FLEXIBLE                                                                                  the exit ramp, continue straight through the stop sign. At the first traffic light, turn left
                                                                                                                         STREET ADDRESS
         »» Review the talking points on Georgia PEACH          »» Legislator offices’ schedules can shift rapidly, so                                       onto Hank Aaron Drive. (The name will change to Capitol Avenue). The State Capitol is
                                                                                                                         The Office of the Governor
            Act and parity for mental health and on                you may have to meet with a different person                                              on your left.
                                                                                                                         State of Georgia
            Georgia’s mental health issues.                        or have less (or more) time than planned.             203 State Capitol                   FROM THE NORTH: Take I-75/85 South to Exit 248A (MLK, Jr. Drive) and veer right
         »» Decide as a group on the 1-2 other issues that      »» If asked about topics outside of NAMI                 Atlanta, Georgia 30334              onto MLK, Jr. Drive. The Capitol will be on your left. For parking, turn right at second
            you want to talk about in your meetings.               GEORGIA’s key asks, bring the conversation                                                light onto Capitol Avenue and parking will be on your right at the Sloppy Floyd/Twin
                                                                   back to your key points or say “I do not              MAILING ADDRESS                     Towers complex.
         »» Learn about your members of the Georgia
                                                                   know” and offer to connect with NAMI                  206 Washington Street
            General Assembly
                                                                   GEORGIA staff for follow up.                          Suite 203, State Capitol            FROM THE EAST: Take I-20 West to Exit 58A (Capitol Avenue). Turn right and continue
                                                                                                                         Atlanta, GA 30334                   on Capitol Avenue. The Capitol will be approximately one mile down on the left.
                                                                                                                         Phone: 404-656-1776
                                                                                                                                                             FROM THE WEST: Take I-20 to Exit 56B (Windsor Street/Spring Street/Stadium). At
         KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE                                                                                              Fax: 404-657-7332
                                                                KEEP POLITICS OUT OF IT                                                                      the third light, turn left onto Central Avenue. Go to Mitchell Street and turn right. Go
         »» FIND YOUR LEGISLATOR: https://openstates.                                                                                                        one block and the capitol will be on the left.
            org/find_your_legislator                            »» Mental illness does not discriminate
                                                                   based on political party. NAMI GEORGIA
         »» Review information on your Senators and                is a nonpartisan organization looking for
            Representative by visiting
            senators/en-US/SenateMembersList.aspx or
                                                                   bipartisan solutions.
                                                                »» Respect your Legislator’s political views,
                                                                                                                                      WAYS TO GET TO & FROM THE CAPITOL
            HouseMembersList.aspx.                                 even if they differ from your own.

         »» Look for common points of interest or               »» Do not get angry or raise your voice.
            connection between you and the member to
            help spur conversation.                                                                                                                                                         > Uber or Lyft ridesharing services are available
                                                                BUILD A CONNECTION                                                                                                            throughout Atlanta via their respective phone apps.

                                                                »» You may be meeting with the Legislator or
         PLAN MEETING ROLES                                                                                                                                                                PARKING
                                                                   their staff; treat both with equal respect.
                                                                                                                                                                                           > Buses and 15-passenger or larger vans are allowed to
         »» Meetings may be brief, and not everyone will        »» Invite your Legislator to your NAMI
                                                                                                                                                                                              park on the west side of Washington Street in front of
            have a chance to speak at length.                      GEORGIAWalk, a local mental health
                                                                                                                                                                                              the Capitol on most weekdays. Capitol events or security
                                                                   program, or other event.
         »» Plan who will take the lead, who will make                                                                                                                                        threats may make this space unavailable. In those cases,
            certain points, and who might share a story.        »» All politics are local: ask for a contact to                                                                               buses will be rerouted by Capitol security.
                                                                   send a formal invitation or to schedule a
         »» If your group is large, expect that your role may                                                                                                                              > Public parking is available in several locations
                                                                   future meeting.                                           MARTA
            be to introduce yourself, then observe or tweet.                                                                                                                                  surrounding the Capitol. Parking fees vary by lot. Certain
                                                                                                                             > The Georgia State Capitol building is only one                 lots may be closed due to the legislative session. The
         »» Remember that facts support and stories
                                                                                                                               block away from the Georgia State MARTA                        following lots are always open to the public if spaces are
            move people—but keep your story to 90
                                                                END ON A POSITIVE NOTE                                         Station on the blue/green rail line. If you are                available:
            seconds or less.
                                                                                                                               coming from the red or gold rail line, exit at the             • Steve Polk Plaza Parking is located on M.L. King, Jr., Drive,
                                                                »» Thank the Legislator or their staff for their               Five Points Station and follow the signs to the                  one block from the Capitol.
                                                                   time and support (if applicable).                           Eastbound platform. Get on the first eastbound                 • A surface lot is located on Memorial Drive, one block
         BE AWARE OF TIME                                       »» Leave NAMI GEORGIA’s legislative issue                      train and ride one stop to the Georgia State                     from the Capitol.
                                                                   briefs and mental health facts with                         Station. Take the Piedmont Avenue exit out of
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Underground Parking: A parking garage is located
         »» Legislators’ schedules are tight, so be on time        Legislative office staff.                                   the station and turn left on Piedmont Avenue.
                                                                                                                                                                                                on the north side of Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, two
            for your appointments.                                                                                             The Capitol is located one block south of the
                                                                »» Ask for a picture with the Legislator. Tweet                                                                                 blocks from the Capitol.
         »» Divide up your group (if possible) if you think                                                                    MARTA station. MARTA has eight (8) bus routes
                                                                   it, put it on Facebook, send it to NAMI                     that serve Capitol Hill. For more information and
            you have appointments timed too closely                GEORGIA at and
            together to stay on schedule.                                                                                      route planning, contact MARTA at 404-848-5000               ADDITIONAL ACCESSIBILITY INFORMATION
                                                                   share it in your Affiliate newsletter.                      or visit
         »» The Georgia State Capitol is big, and it                                                                                                                                       > The Georgia Building Authority and the state ADA
                                                                »» Mention that NAMI GEORGIA is a resource                     marta-to-the-georgia-capitol.
            may take 10–15 minutes to walk between                                                                                                                                            Coordinator’s Office guide for all accessibility information
                                                                   that offers free local education and support              > MARTA maps and trip planner tools are
            appointments.                                                                                                                                                                     can be found at
                                                                   programs and reference the “NAMI Affiliate                  available at                                 visitors-disabilities.
                                                                   in Your Community” card in the folder.

4     2019 DAY AT THE CAPITAL GUIDE • TO LEARN MORE, VISIT WWW.NAMIGA.ORG.                                                                                                                                                                                      5
                              CAPITOL HILL MAP                                                                                         PLACES TO EAT NEAR THE CAPITOL

                                                                                                                               There are limited places to get lunch or refreshments at The Georgia State Capitol. Those available include:

                                                                                                                               1.   There is a very small coffee shop with limited drinks    4.   The Food Shoppe, 123 Luckie St NW
                   S                                                                                                                and food located in the bottom floor of the capitol.     5.   Aviva by Kameel, 225 Peachtree St NE
                                                                                                                               2.   Capitol Commons Café in the James “Sloppy”               6.   Big Daddy’s Southern Cuisine, 121 Martin Luther
                  A                                                                                                                 Floyd Veterans Memorial Building: located across              King Jr Drive
                                                                                                                                    MLK Jr. Drive, one level below the main entry in
                                                                                                                                    the Twin Towers.                                         7.   Charley’s Grilled Subs, 971 Spine Rd.
                                                                                                                                    Hours of Operation: Breakfast 6:45 a.m. to               8.   Charley’s Philly Steaks, 7700 Spine Rd.
                                                                                                                                    10 a.m. Lunch 10:45 a.m. to 2 p.m.
                                                  P   Public Parking       C Cafeteria       EV   EV Charging                                                                                9.   Quiznos, 1 Martin Luther King Jr Dr. SW
                                                                                                  Station                      3.   Coverdell Legislative Office Building Café:
                                                  S   Snack Bar            A ATM Machine                                                                                                     10. Subway, 221 Central Ave SW
                                                                                                                                    located located across Capitol Square from
                                                                                                                                    the Capitol, on the 6th floor. The Café offers
                                                                                                                                    an entrée line and grill. Hours of Operation:
                                                                                                                                    Breakfast 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Lunch 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

                                      P                                                                                                                                                   LEGISLATORS’ OFFICES
                                                                                                                                                                                   Find your legislators’ office number by finding them here:
                                                                                                                                                                                   Then click on each name for contact information.
                                                                                                                                                                                   SENATORS’ OFFICES are at the Capitol listed as “CAP”
                                              P                                                                                                                                    REPRESENTATIVES’ OFFICES are located at the Paul D.
                                                                                                                                                                                   Coverdell Legislative Office Building - across the street from
                                                                                                                                                                                   the Capitol. Listed as “CLOB”
                                                                                                                                                                                   18 Capitol Square SW, Atlanta, GA 30334

                                                                                                                    INTRODUCING NAMI GEORGIA TO YOUR LEGISLATOR
                                                                                              S             P
                                                                                                                > Introduce yourself, your relationship to NAMI GEORGIA, and          > Discuss the mental health crisis in Georgia and in our communities:
                                                                                                                  your connection to the organization.                                  • 1 in 5 Georgians are affected by mental illness in a given year.1
                                                                                                                > Thank your legislator and/or staff for meeting with you and           • The suicide rate is the highest it has been in decades
                                                                                                                                                                                            especially among Georgia’s children.2
                                                                                                                  for any past or current support, if applicable.
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Georgia is ranked 43 out of 50 states for access to mental
                                                                                                                > Share that NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental                 health care resources and insurances. We must increase
                                                                                                                  health organization, active in 900 communities across                     expenditures to support treatment and supports.
                                          S                                                                       the country. NAMI GEORGIA represents 18 NAMI Affiliates                 • More than half of adults and children with mental illness do
                                  C                                                                               located across Georgia serving over 10,000 Georgians                      not receive treatment.4
                                                                                                                  affected by mental health at no cost to the public.
                                                                                                                                                                                      > Express that we need more access to quality, affordable
                                                                                                                > Briefly talk about what your affiliate and what NAMI                    mental health services for Georgians, not less.
                                                                                                                  GEORGIA provides in your community.
                                                                                                                                                                                      > Share that when we do not have adequate mental health
                              A                                   EV
                                                                                                                                                                                          care coverage, we keep people from getting the treatment
                          S                                            P                                                                                                                  they need and push people with mental illness into
                                                                                                                                                                                          emergency rooms, jails, and the streets.

                                                                                                                               After the above, an appointed storyteller should briefly share their personal story. The meeting lead
                                                                                                                                 and other appointed messengers should then discuss NAMI GEORGIA’s key issues and asks.

6   2019 DAY AT THE CAPITAL GUIDE • TO LEARN MORE, VISIT WWW.NAMIGA.ORG.                                                                                                                                                                                      7
                                       TALKING POINTS                                                                                                                     TALKING POINTS AND ASKS
                                                 to no more restrictive than policies        > Geographic restrictions (e.g., no                                                           NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK
                                                 and practices for medical or surgical         coverage for out-of-state treatment).
                                                                                                                                                       END UNNECESSARY
              ACHIEVE MENTAL                     services.                                                                                             INCARCERATION                      > Increase the number of accountability                       WORKFORCE
              HEALTH PARITY                                                                  > Failure of the formulary (medications                                                        courts in Georgia.
                                                                                               covered by insurance) to include
                                                                                                                                                       OF INDIVIDUALS                                                                                   DEVELOPMENT
              IN GEORGIA                       EXAMPLES OF PARITY VIOLATIONS
                                                                                                                                                       WITH MENTAL                        > Divert non-violent offenders with
                                               CAN INCLUDE:                                    psychiatric medications (e.g., anti-
                                                                                                                                                                                            mental illness into treatment.
                                                                                               psychotic medications).                                 ILLNESS
                                               > Denials of authorization for mental                                                                                                      > Invest in mental health services that         TALKING POINTS
TALKING POINTS                                   health and substance abuse care.            > High out-of-pocket costs for prescription
                                                                                                                                                                                            keep people out of jail in the first place.
                                                                                               drugs that discourage people from           TALKING POINTS                                                                                 > Nationally, there are workforce
> There is currently no mechanism in           > “Fail-first” requirements - refusal to        participating in both mental health and                                                    > Continue Crisis Intervention Team (CIT)         shortages of mental health providers
    Georgia to measure or enforce the            pay for higher cost therapies until the       other medical treatment.                    > A person who is having a mental                training of police, corrections and other       including psychiatrists, psychologists,
    the federal Mental Health Parity and         patient fails at a lower cost treatment.                                                    health crisis is often more likely to land     first responders on safely and effectively      licensed clinical social workers,
    Addiction Equity Act of 2008.                                                            > Failure to cover medication-assisted          in jail than in a hospital. That’s wrong.
                                               > A limited number of in-network behav-                                                                                                      responding to people with mental illness.       marriage and family therapists, and
                                                                                               treatment (MAT) for persons with
> The Office of the Insurance and Fire           ioral health care providers or failure of                                                 > Tragically, about 2 million people with      > Request the Georgia Department of               advanced nurse practitioners who are
                                                                                               substance abuse disorders.
    Safety Commissioner should measure           those providers to take new patients.                                                       mental illness are booked into jails                                                           specializing in mental health care.
                                                                                                                                                                                            Behavioral Health and Developmental
    compliance and hold insurance                                                                                                            every year, most on minor, non-violent
                                               > Exclusion of coverage for certain types      NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK                                                                            Disabilities (DBHDD) funding for NAMI         > Georgia is ranked 48th in the adequate
    companies accountable for parity.                                                                                                        charges.10
                                                 of treatment without any medical                                                                                                           Georgia be reinstated to support                availability of mental health workforce.
                                                                                             > Support the Georgia Parity PEACH Act        > About 1 in 5 jail inmates in the U.S.
> Parity is grounded in ensuring equal           necessity analysis.                                                                                                                        coordination and development of
                                                                                               #PassThePeach .                               have a serious mental illness.11                                                             > There are 10.9 Psychiatrists per
    coverage of treatment services under                                                                                                                                                    advocates participating in CIT training
                                               > Prior authorization requirements and                                                                                                                                                       100,000 people and only 5.9 child and
    both the behavioral health and medical                                                   > Ask the Insurance and Fire Safety           > When in jail, people with mental illness       state-wide.
                                                 re-authorization for mental illness or                                                                                                                                                     adolescent psychiatrists per 100,000
    benefits offered by a health plan. Thus,                                                   Commissioner’s Office or an oversight         stay almost twice as long as others
                                                 substance use disorder (e.g., inpatient                                                                                                  > Encourage and fund mental health                youth, in the state.
    parity law requires that a health plan’s                                                   committee to conduct regular, random          facing similar charges.12
                                                 mental health care coverage re-                                                                                                            training for all first responders, such
    policies and practices cover behavioral                                                    market audits for parity compliance on      > Disproportionate numbers of people                                                           > With the prevalence of mental
                                                 authorization required every 5 days).                                                                                                      as Emergency Medical Services, and
    health services (mental health and                                                         all commercial health insurance and           with mental illness are in our criminal                                                        illness at 19%, it is more likely for
                                                                                                                                                                                            family members so police are not
    substance use disorders) in a way                                                          Medicaid managed care plans.                  justice systems, often as a result of                                                          first responders and other medical
                                                                                                                                                                                            engaged during a mental health crisis.
                                                                                                                                             untreated or undertreated illness.                                                             professionals to encounter someone
                                                                                                                                                                                          > Encourage and fund placement of a               with a mental illness than someone
                                                                                                                                           > Jails have become the de facto mental          mental health professional trained by
                                               > Neuropsychiatric Disorders (Mental                                                                                                                                                         who is having a heart attack.
                                                                                              NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK                             health institutions of our day.
                                                 and Behavioral 13.9% and Neurological                                                                                                      the Georgia Crisis and Access line to be
                MAXIMIZE                                                                     > Maintain funding for existing mental        > People with serious mental illness are         on call in all 911 units.                      NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK
                                                 5.1%) are now the leading cause of
                FEDERAL                          disability in our country.8                   health Medicaid codes.                        incarcerated at four times the rate of
                OPPORTUNITIES                                                                                                                the general population.13                                                                    > Increase the number of professionals
                                                                                             > Add and expand Medicaid mental
                                               DECREASING THE UNINSURED                                                                                                                                                                     in the state specializing in mental
                TO INCREASE                                                                    health codes to address the growing
                                               POPULATION IN GEORGIA                           needs in Georgia.                                                                                                                            health by setting standards for
                THE INSURED                                                                                                                                                               > According to a 2016 VA report, 20               education that offer trauma and
                                               > Additional Medicaid programs cover          > Implement the recommendations
                POPULATION OF                    people who fall through the cracks,                                                                                                        veterans per day die by suicide.19              suicide courses earlier.
                                                                                               of the Homelessness Task Force Study                      INVEST IN                          In Georgia alone nearly 4 veterans die
                                                 like young adults with first symptoms         Committee.                                                                                                                                 > Offer loan forgiveness for those who
                                                 of psychosis, who are not eligible for                                                                  MILITARY AND                       each week by suicide.20
                                                                                             > Leverage state funds to access                                                                                                               work in rural areas impacted by
                                                 traditional Medicaid.                                                                                   VETERANS                                                                           workforce shortages.
                                                                                               federal Medicaid funds to support                                                           NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK
TALKING POINTS                                 > Research from Ohio shows that people          individuals who are currently or at risk                                                                                                   > Increase the Medicaid reimbursement
> Congress showed strong bipartisan              enrolled in new Medicaid are getting          of homelessness.
                                                 more mental health care, managing                                                         TALKING POINTS                                 > Improve the claims process by hiring            rate for mental health services.
    support of mental health care when
                                                 chronic depression better, and using        > Oppose any legislation that:                                                                 more claims specialists at VA clinics or
    it passed mental health reform in the                                                                                                  > Georgia’s military service members
                                                 costly emergency department care              • Caps or limits Medicaid mental health                                                      by partnering with non-profit veterans
    21st Century Cures Act in 2016.                                                                                                          and veterans struggle to get mental
                                                 less. It also shows that Medicaid helps         services.                                                                                  advocacy groups.
> This was significant because over                                                                                                          health treatment, have high rates
                                                 people to keep working or to seek work.9      • Takes away protections for people                                                        > Provide food or housing assistance to
    1.3 million Georgians are affected                                                                                                       of mental illness and suicide, and
                                               > New Medicaid removes barriers for               with mental health conditions                                                              veterans who are awaiting the results
    by a mental illness,⁵ yet more than                                                                                                      experience unique barriers to care.
    61 percent of adults in Georgia with         people with mental illness by allowing          in health plans or leaves fewer                                                            of disability claims.
                                                 people to qualify based on income,              Georgians with coverage for mental        > Additionally, 12 percent of Georgia’s
    mental health conditions go without
                                                 rather than a disability determination.         illness.                                    homeless population are veterans,            > Support PTSD treatment research
                                                                                                                                             which is striking because only 7 percent       through partnerships with universities.
> We need more coverage for mental             > This change in qualification helps
                                                                                                                                             of Georgia’s overall population are          > Reduce barriers to care by funding
    health care, not less.                       people get mental health services
                                                 and allows for a path to work and                                                           veterans.18                                    telemedicine and by incentivizing
> Nearly 1 in 3 people (29 percent)              self-sufficiency.                                                                                                                          mental health providers to practice in
    covered under Medicaid have a mental
                                                                                                                                           > Veterans in Georgia often wait far too
                                                                                                                                             long for their disability claims to be         rural areas of the state.
    health or substance use condition. 7
                                                                                                                                             approved.                                    > Expand Georgia Crisis and Access Line.                       IN GEORGIA

8          2019 DAY AT THE CAPITAL GUIDE • TO LEARN MORE, VISIT WWW.NAMIGA.ORG.                                                                                                                                                                                                        9
                                        TITLE AND ASKS                                                                                                                  TALKING POINTS AND ASKS
                                                COORDINATED SPECIALTY CARE (CSC)                Georgia’s APEX program which                                                             NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK                              • Increase funding for supported housing
                                                SERVICES INCLUDE:                               funds community mental health                           INVEST IN                                                                          placements for Georgia Housing
             INVEST IN MENTAL                                                                   providers throughout Georgia to                                                         > Protect the Department of Housing                Voucher Program participants.
             HEALTH SERVICES                    > Case management,                                                                                      APPROPRIATE,                      and Urban Development (HUD) and
                                                                                                build infrastructure for school-based                                                                                                    • Allocate funding to expand the
             FOR CHILDREN,                      > Medications and primary care
                                                                                                mental health services.                                 AFFORDABLE                        oppose any cuts to HUD program.
                                                  coordination,                                                                                                                                                                            Georgia Housing Voucher and Bridge
             YOUNG ADULTS,                                                                    • Support the development of                              HOUSING FOR                     > Support the following findings of the            Program to include non-settlement
                                                > Cognitive behavioral therapy,                 telemed services for underserved                        PEOPLE LIVING                     Georgia State Senate 2017 Homeless
             AND FAMILIES                                                                                                                                                                                                                  criteria individuals with a substance
                                                > Supported education and                       areas of the state.                                     WITH MENTAL                       Committee:                                       use diagnosis.
                                                  employment, and
                                                                                                                                                        ILLNESS                           • Leverage state funds by accessing            • Allocate funding to PATH, ACT, CST,
                                                > Family education and support.                                                                                                             federal Medicaid funds to support              and ICM services to support the
TALKING POINTS                                                                                                                                                                              individuals who are currently or at            provision of replacement state-
> Half of mental health conditions begin         NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK                                                                                                                         risk of homelessness.
                                                                                                                                         TALKING POINTS                                                                                    issued identification for enrolled
  by age 14 and 75 percent by age 24.    16
                                                > Supplement the 10% of Georgia’s                                                                                                         • Increase state funding to the                  individuals transitioning from
                                                                                                                                         > Lack of safe and affordable housing
> Schizophrenia and other psychotic               federal mental health block grant set                                                                                                     State Housing Trust Fund for the               correctional facilities.
                                                                                                                                           is one of the most significant barriers
  disorders are serious mental illnesses,         aside for Coordinated Specialty Care                                                     to independent living for people                 Homelessness (SHTF) in order to              • The creation of a statewide public-
  and typically strike in youth.                  (CSC) with state funds to support the                                                    with serious mental illness. Without             enable the Department of Consumer              private partnership to serve as a
                                                  expansion of early psychosis programs.                                                   housing, too many cycle in and out               Affairs (DCA) to expand existing               clearinghouse of best practices,
> Without early treatment, the                                                                                                                                                              homelessness programs as well as
                                                > NAMI Georgia supports the following                                                      of homelessness, incarceration,                                                                 information, and resources that
  consequences can be tragic. Youth
                                                                                                                                           shelters, emergency departments,                 to explore additional options and              supports developing and sustaining
  with psychosis are dying at a rate 24           findings and recommendations of the
                                                                                                                                           and hospitalization—or remain                    opportunities to maximize federal              local re-entry case planning
  times higher than their peers.17                Governor’s Commission on Children’s
                                                                                                                                           institutionalized.                               funds to address homelessness in               collaboratives in every county.
                                                  Mental Health released on December
> Fortunately, National Institute of                                                                                                                                                        Georgia.
                                                  12, 2017:                                                                              > Georgia’s Department of Justice                                                               • Increasing state funding for private
  Mental Health (NIMH) research shows                                                                                                                                                     • Allocate funding for DCA’s expansion
                                                  • Fund supported education and                                                           Settlement continues to focus on the                                                            and/or nonprofit homeless shelters
  that Coordinated Specialty Care (CSC)                                                                                                                                                     of the Section 811 Project Rental
                                                     employment programs for youth and                                                     importance of housing for recovery.                                                             to provide increased educational
  services in early psychosis programs                                                                                                                                                      Assistance Demonstration Program
                                                     emerging adults with serious mental                                                                                                                                                   and psychosocial supports for
  are changing the trajectory of mental                                                                                                  > Georgia must plan for the future and             and mixed income properties in high
                                                     illness.                                                                                                                                                                              homeless youth.
  illness and helping young people get                                                                                                     work to ensure that all people with mental       density counties.
                                                  • Increase access to behavioral
  their lives on track.                                                                                                                    illness living in the state have access to
                                                     health care for children through
                                                                                                                                           appropriate, affordable housing.

                                                > This drop was the second consecutive        Health and co-occurring substance                                                         > Among military family caregivers,            > With the heavy demands and strains
               INVEST IN                          yearly decline in life expectancy; the      abuse disorders, targeting the male                      INVEST IN                          nearly 40 percent have major                   on family caregivers, state programs
                                                                                                                                                                                          depression, more than 4 times the              should provide support to family
               MENTAL HEALTH                      first 2-year decline since the early        population ages 18-45 with dual                          SUPPORT
                                                  1960’s.                                     diagnosis/opioid addiction issues.                                                          general population.23                          caregivers of people with mental illness.
                                                                                                                                                       FOR MENTAL
                                                                                            > Fund a tax credit for Mental Health                                                       > Family caregivers typically provide
                                                > Deaths from drug overdose surged 21                                                                  HEALTH FAMILY                                                                    NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK
                                                  percent from 2015 to 2016.                  providers willing to serve as preceptors                                                    financial and emotional support,
TALKING POINTS                                                                                                                                                                            manage medications, search for
                                                                                              (mentor to medical student),                                                                                                             > Thank you for historic support of NAMI
> What we pay for reflects our values as        > Research is showing that the earlier        particularly in underserved/low health                                                      mental health services, make                   GEORGIA. Please continue to support
  Georgians.                                      people get effective mental health                                                                                                      appointments, prepare meals, shop,
                                                                                              access areas of Georgia.                                                                                                                   DBHDD funding of NAMI GEORGIA
                                                  treatment, the better the outcomes                                                     TALKING POINTS
> Our state should show that it values                                                      > Support opioid antidotes like Narcan                                                        arrange transportation, complete               whose volunteers with lived experience
                                                  and the lower the cost of health care.                                                 > More than 8.4 million Americans,               paperwork, and respond to crises.
  the lives of the over 1.3 million residents                                                 being made available over the counter.                                                                                                     educate and support over 10,000
  with mental health conditions — and           > Early psychosis programs are one                                                         including family members of veterans,
                                                                                            > Fund opioid therapeutic addiction                                                         > Mental health family caregivers devote         Georgians affected by mental health
  future generations — by investing in            example where treatment is changing                                                      provide care to an adult relative living
                                                                                              treatment centers across the state to                                                       an average of 32 hours a week to               conditions with no cost to them.
  mental health and improving mental              the course of mental illness and                                                         with mental illness.21
                                                                                              address the epidemic.                                                                       caregiving,24 about 8 hours a week
  health services and supports.                   helping young people get better.
                                                                                            > Fund additional Behavioral Health          > With national shortages of mental              more than caregivers of people with
> Half of mental health conditions begin                                                      Crisis Centers across the state.             health services, the role of caregiver         other chronic conditions.
                                                 NAMI GEORGIA’S ASK
  by age 14 and 75% by age 24.14                                                                                                           often falls on families—with little or no
                                                                                                                                                                                        > 1 in 4 family caregivers of adults with
                                                > Appropriate $250k in matching funds                                                      support or training.
> The average life expectancy in the U.S.                                                                                                                                                 mental illness reports financial strain.25
                                                  to NAMI GEORGIA for a private-                                                         > Almost 75 percent of caregivers
  dropped in 2016 largely because of an
                                                  public partnership to establish a pilot                                                  experience a high level of emotional
  increase in the number of deaths by
                                                  Clubhouse for Georgians with Mental                                                      stress and 2-in-3 are in poor or fair
  drug overdoses.

10       2019 DAY AT THE CAPITAL GUIDE • TO LEARN MORE, VISIT WWW.NAMIGA.ORG.                                                                                                                                                                                                        11
TITLE                                                                                                                      ENDNOTES
                                                                                                                           1.    Georgia (State). Legislature. House of Representatives. House Budget & Research Office. Study Committee on Mental Illness
                                                                                                                                 Initiative, Reform, Public Health, and Safety: Final Report, 2016. Retrieved from
                                                                                                                           2.    Cook, Rhonda. “Youth Suicides Continue to Rise Sharply in Georgia.” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 17 Nov. 2017,
                                                                                                                           3.    Governing magazine has a chart for FY 2010 (no more recent), which ranks Georgia 47th:
                                                                                                                           4.    Park-Lee/SAMHSA, Eunice, et al. “Receipt of Services for Substance Use and Mental Health Issues among Adults: Results from the
                                                                                                                                 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.”Receipt of Services for Substance Use and Mental Healthy Issues among Adults:
                                                                                                                                 Results from the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 1 Sept. 2016,
                                                                                                                           5.    “Mental Health in America - Prevalence Data.” Mental Health America, 17 Oct. 2016,
                                                                                                                           6.    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Behavioral Health Barometer: Georgia, Volume 4: Indicators as
                                                                                                                                 measured through the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services,
                                                                                                                                 and the Uniform Reporting System. HHS Publication No. SMA–17–Baro–16–States–GA. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental
                                                                                                                                 Health Services Administration, 2017.
                                                                                                                           7.    Americans with Mental Health and Substance Abuse Disorders: The Single Largest Beneficiaries of the Medicaid Expansion. The
                                                                                                                                 National Council for Behavioral Health, 2017,
                                                                                                                           8.    “U.S. Leading Categories of Diseases/Disorders.” National Institute of Mental Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human
                                                                                                                           9.    Investing in Ohio: Medicaid and Access to Mental Health and Addiction Services. The National Council for Behavioral Health, 2017, www.

      FOLLOW UP TO HAVE A GREATER IMPACT                                                                                   10. “Jailing People With Mental Illness.” NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness,
                                                                                                                           11.   “Serious Mental Illness Prevalence in Jails and Prisons.” Treatment Advocacy Center, Sept. 2016, www.treatmentadvocacycenter.
        SEND A THANK YOU                                                                                                   12. Levin , A. (2016, May 20). County Leaders Step Up To Reduce Incarceration Of Mentally Ill People. Psychiatric News. Retrieved from:
        > Send a short follow-up email within a few                                                                  
          days of your Legislative meetings.                                                                               13. Lurigio, A. J. (2011). People with serious mental illness in the criminal justice system: Causes, consequences, and correctives. The
                                                                                                                               Prison Journal, 91(3), 66S-86S. doi: 10.1177/0032885511415226
        > Attach any photos that you may have taken
                                                                                                                           14. “Mental Health Conditions.” NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness,
          with the legislator or staff.
                                                          KEEP IT GOING                                                    15. Bernstein, Lenny, and Christopher Ingraham. “Health & Science Fueled by Drug Crisis, U.S. Life Expectancy Declines for a Second
        > Thank the office for their time and reiterate                                                                        Straight Year.” The Washington Post, 21 Dec. 2017,
          the importance of quality, affordable
                                                          > If you aren’t getting NAMI GEORGIA’s advocacy alerts,
                                                            sign up at (You should also
          mental healthcare.                                                                                                   inl&utm_term
                                                            follow @namigeorgia on Twitter and Instagram, and like
                                                                                                                           16. “Mental Health Conditions.” NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness,
        COMPLETE FEEDBACK FORMS                             NAMI GEORGIA on Facebook at
                                                            GEORGIA.)                                                      17.   “Higher Death Rate among Youth with First Episode Psychosis.” National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human
        > The meeting lead should fill out one Mental                                                                            Services, 6 Apr. 2017,
          Health Day at the Capitol feedback form for     > Follow or like your legislators on Twitter, Facebook and       18. Page 7:
          each meeting. These forms can be found at         Instagram.
                                                                                                                           19. Suicide Among Veterans and Other Americans 2001–2014. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 2016,
          the Mental Health Day debrief table in the      > Sign up for your legislators’ email lists by visiting their          docs/2016suicidedatareport.pdf.
          Capitol rotunda.                                  websites, which you can find by going to their page at         20. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “Georgia Veteran Suicide Data Sheet.” 2015.
        > These forms help NAMI GEORGIA staff                     Suicide-Data-Sheet-Georgia.pdf.

          learn about your visit, and follow up             aspx or                21. Hunt, Gail Gibson, et al. On Pins & Needles: Caregivers of Adults with Mental Illness. The National Alliance for Caregiving, 2016, www.
          appropriately with legislative offices.           HouseMembersList.aspx.                                   

                                                          > Invite your legislators to your NAMIWalks and other            22. Hunt, Gail Gibson, et al. On Pins & Needles: Caregivers of Adults with Mental Illness. The National Alliance for Caregiving, 2016, www.
        TWEET & POST                                        NAMI GEORGIA events including the Annual Conference

                                                            and Gubernatorial Mental Health Forum, your local              23. Ramchand, R; Tanielian, T; Fisher, MP; Vaughan, CA; Trail, TE; Epley, C; Voorhies, P; Robbins, MW; Robinson, E; Ghosh-Dastidar, B
        > Members of Congress pay close attention                                                                              (2014) Hidden Heroes: America’s Military Caregivers. Elizabeth Dole Foundation. Accessed May 30, 2017:
          to social media, so tweet at them or post         NAMI Affiliate events or other local mental health
                                                                                                                               content/dam/rand/pubs/research_reports/RR400/RR499/RAND_RR499.pdf Ibid. p.48
          on their Facebook wall and let them know          programs.
                                                                                                                           24. Hunt, Gail Gibson, et al. On Pins & Needles: Caregivers of Adults with Mental Illness. The National Alliance for Caregiving, 2016, www.
          that mental health is important to you.         > Attend legislators’ events in your district to further build
        > See the last page for tips and sample             your relationship, like office hours and public forums.        25. Hunt, Gail Gibson, et al. On Pins & Needles: Caregivers of Adults with Mental Illness. The National Alliance for Caregiving, 2016, www.
          tweets and posts.                                                                                          

12   2019 DAY AT THE CAPITAL GUIDE • TO LEARN MORE, VISIT WWW.NAMIGA.ORG.                                                                                                                                                                                                 13

Social media is an important           1. Amplify #Act4MentalHealth and #MH4ALL on social
tool for legislators and                  media: Use #Act4MentalHealth for your Mental Health
their staff to learn about                Day at the Capitol posts.
constituents’ opinions, and
your posts will help reinforce         2. Use photos and videos: Take pictures in front of the
the messages we share in                  Georgia State Capitol, outside of your legislator’s office
our meetings.                             and with your legislator, if possible.

Here are some tips on how to           3. Make it personal: As with your meetings, it is helpful to
use social media during (and              briefly share your personal story on social media.
after) Mental Health Day at            4. Thank your legislators: Thank your legislator or their staff
the Capitol:                              by tagging them and sharing pictures. Keep your posts
                                          positive, regardless of your meeting outcome.

             Please add your photos and personal stories for even more impact.

                   #Act4MentalHealth           #MH4ALL          #NAMIGEORGIA
                                                                                                                            Mental Health
         > Thank you @[Legislator] for meeting with @namigeorgia to discuss protecting Medicaid and                 Join us in the 50 communities around the state
                                                                                                                    where we will be exploring how Georgia can
           how to #Act4MentalHealth
         > 1 in 5 are affected by a #mentalhealth condition in their life. Thank you @[Legislator] for all
           you do to #Act4MentalHealth                                                                              change the conversation around mental health.
         > Today, I #Act4MentalHealth by telling Georgia Legislators to protect Medicaid for those who
           rely on it for mental health care #DontCutOurCare
         > Meeting today with @[Legislator] to discuss how to protect mental health care coverage
           #Act4MentalHealth                                                                                                         HOW IT WORKS
         > @[Legislator] – Thank you for standing up for #mentalhealth. #Act4MentalHealth
         > We need MORE mental health coverage, not LESS. Thank you @[Legislator] for discussing
           ways to #Act4MentalHealth today
         > Half of people with mental illness get no treatment. We need more mental health care, not
           less. Today, I #Act4MentalHealth

         FACEBOOK                                                                                            HOST          6-10         3 BIG       EQUAL TIME   ONE VOICE
         > Today, I went to the Georgia State Capitol to meet with [Legislator] to discuss how to protect
           mental health coverage. Thank you for your support of the 1 in 5 Georgians affected by                         GUESTS      QUESTIONS      TO SHARE    AT A TIME
           mental illness. #Act4MentalHealth
         > Thank you [Legislator] for meeting with NAMI GEORGIA to discuss ways to protect mental
           health coverage. #Act4MentalHealth
                                                                                                                                   TO HOST OR ATTEND:

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