CAFE TAC News and Notes for March 2, 2016

Welcome to March!

In this News and Notes email, CAFÉ TAC has brought together a collection of highlights from the mental health and recovery world to keep you informed and connected with what’s going on!

There are several webinars and articles that deal with integration of mental health services in whole health settings, peers in the workforce, campus mental health and other prevalent issues. There should be something here to interest everyone.

Don’t forget, you can also stay in touch with us through Twitter and Facebook. We are always eager to hear your thoughts, opinions and perspective, so let us know what you know!


Sen. Durbin (D-IL) Introduces Bill to Expand Access to Substance Abuse Treatment Under Medicaid

A new piece of legislation has been introduced in the Senate, The Medicaid Coverage for Addiction Recovery Expansion (Medicaid CARE) Act. While this is a substance abuse bill, not a mental health bill, it does touch on an important issue for the mental health community: the “IMD exclusion.”

The IMD Exclusion, which came into law as part of de-institutionalization efforts, prohibits the use of federal Medicaid financing for care provided to most patients in residential mental health and substance use disorder residential treatment facilities larger than 16 beds. This bill would lift that restriction for substance abuse treatment facilities.

Of course, the bill also has a number of other provisions. You can read all about them in this press release, which accompanied the bill’s introduction:


Webinar: What if I am the Only Peer on My Team? Leading the Way in Behavioral and Integrated Healthcare Settings

Friday, March 4, 2016
Noon ET / 11:00am CT / 10:00am MT / 9:00am PT

It can definitely be challenging for peer support specialists working in settings where they interact with other non-peer professionals to feel like their voice is heard and their role is understood by other members of the team. In this BRSS TACS webinar, LaVerne Miller will lead a conversation on how peer professionals working in integrated settings can deal with the hurdles that accompany working as a team.

Register for this webinar at


Medical Doctors and Mental Health Professionals are Finally Talking

Speaking of integrated settings, this CNN article examines how several programs are effectively implementing an integrated approach, facilitating coordination between mental and physical health providers, with positive results for the individuals they serve.


Webinar: Establishing Whole Health Recovery Models in Diverse Communities

Thursday, March 17, 2016

1:00-2:30pm ET(12:00pm CT, 11:00am MT, 10:00am PT)
Recovery supports are not as available or as utilized in diverse communities as they are in predominately white communities. Addressing this reality is not as simple as increasing outreach and engagement. Organizations seeking to deliver recovery supports within diverse communities must make sure that the supports they deliver are culturally congruent.

For many individuals belonging to diverse communities, adverse childhood experiences, social determinants of health, discrimination, and intergenerational toxic shame pose persistent barriers to achieving long-term recovery from substance use disorder (SUD) or mental health conditions. Adapting recovery-oriented support models to better suit the social, cultural, spiritual, and economic characteristics of diverse communities is both essential and achievable. A number of organizations have developed culturally congruent or culturally specific approaches to delivering recovery supports. Others have adapted existing programming to better fit the needs of diverse communities.

The Establishing Whole Health Recovery Models in Diverse Communities webinar will describe how principles of recovery relate to whole health approaches in diverse communities, offer examples of culturally congruent recovery supports, provide tools and resources to assist with planning and implementing recovery supports in diverse communities, and discuss culturally congruent recovery messaging and language.


Syracuse University Student Shares Her Story of Taking a Mental Health Leave of Absence

CAFÉ TAC has continued to focus on the difficulties and challenges that arise when a student with a mental health need is forced to disrupt their education to focus on their recovery. Our last Focus newsletter offered one example where a student had an especially hard time returning to campus. In this story from Syracuse University, the results were more positive.


How Students Can Have The Biggest Role In Improving Mental Health On Campus

When it comes to campus mental health, there is a lot administrators can do, but the key drivers of change are the students. This article examines their power, and how simple engagement with individual students can make a big difference.


Suicide Cluster Prevention on Campus

As CAFÉ TAC examined in Focus 42, the emergence of suicide clusters, in which one campus suicide leads to further instances, is a troubling campus mental health trend. This SAMHSA News piece examines the issue, and offers some useful resources.


Survey: Nationally Certified Peer Specialist Core Competencies Survey for Public Comment

Here is a chance to weigh in on what you think every peer specialists should know. Mental Health America is developing a national, accredited certification for peer support. Their hope is that this national certification will set the bar for knowledge and experience, and lead to more peer specialists being hired by insurers and providers.

MHA is currently taking public comment on the first draft of their core competencies report. Please visit their webpage to view a short introductory video and provide your feedback about our blueprint for the certification.


The Jerry Greenspan Student Voice of Mental Health Award 2016

The JED Foundation is currently accepting applications for their Jerry Greenspan Student Voice of Mental Health Award. This award honors a student that “is reducing prejudice around mental illness, raising awareness of mental health issues on campus, and encouraging help-seeking among their peers.”

The college student selected for this award receives:

  • $3,000 cash scholarship
  • Recognition on JED’s website
  • A trip to New York City to attend JED’s 15th Annual Gala on Tuesday, June 7th to receive the award

Applications are being accepted through Friday, March 25th at 10AM EST. Learn more and find the application at


Webinar: Suicide Prevention Legislation and Our Schools

Thursday, March 24th

1:00 PM EST

Youth suicide now falls within the top three leading causes of death among children and young adults between the ages of 10-24. Numerous states have reacted to this crisis by creating legislation to address the role of schools in suicide prevention. While well-intentioned, these laws vary significantly from state to state and don’t always represent current best practices for suicide awareness and prevention programs.

Join this webinar with internationally recognized expert on school crisis and youth suicide Scott Poland, Ed.D. to learn about the current status and variability of suicide prevention legislation in America, comprehensive best practice recommendations for state legislation, and lessons learned from lawsuits against schools after student suicides.

Register at


Webinar: Making the Tax Code Work For You

March 16th

11-12 p.m. PT and 2-3 p.m. ET

With tax season upon us, Peerlink has invited Marisa Danley to host a webinar to explore tax benefits that are targeting toward low-income and disabled people. Learn about the Earned Income Tax Credit, Education Credits, and more!

Registration and additional info is available at PEERLINK.ORG.


Share Your Story through the You Can Recover Project

Advocate Gayathri Ramprasad has begun a project to collect recovery stories from people with lived experience to share with the world. All you need to participate is a smart phone to record your message and a few minutes to upload it on You Tube. Your story will give hope to people struggling with mental health issues around the world!

The You Can Recover Project’s mission is to give HOPE to people struggling with mental health issues around the world, and inspire them with personal insights on how to recover and rebuild a healthy, meaningful, productive life.

To learn more about the project and see all the recovery videos, please visit

To submit a video to the You Can Recover Project, please visit


Webinar: Fundamentals of the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care

March 17

3 pm ET

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health will host the first session in a series of webinars on the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care (National CLAS Standards).

Culturally and linguistically appropriate services means that services are respectful of and responsive to individual cultural health beliefs and practices, preferred languages, health literacy levels and communication needs. Implementing culturally and linguistically appropriate services helps individuals and organizations respond to the demographic changes in the U.S.; reduce health disparities; improve the quality of services; meet legislative, regulatory and accreditation mandates; gain a competitive edge in the market place; and decrease the likelihood of liability. The National CLAS Standards provide a blueprint for individuals and health and health care organizations to best serve our nation’s increasingly diverse communities through culturally and linguistically appropriate services.

Attendees will learn about culturally and linguistically appropriate services and the National CLAS Standards. For additional resources on the National CLAS Standards, please visit: Register here:


Many Suicidal People Make Long-Term Recovery, Study Shows

Here’s another piece of evidence that people can and do recovery. According to a new Canadian study nearly four in 10 people who seriously consider suicide end up recovering long-term, achieving a mental state that’s free of suicidal symptoms or thoughts. The chances of recovery are more than seven times greater when a patient has a close confidant to trust and count on.


Webinar: Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Youth and Young Adult Engagement In Wraparound

Tuesday, March 29

11am – 12pm PST / 2pm – 3pm EST

This webinar from the National Wraparound Initiative will address the question of how to increase young people’s active participation in Wraparound, and how to assess whether this is happening. It will present findings from a new study and discuss their implications for best practices.

Register at


Telling the Story: Who Gets to Pick Our Mental Health Narratives?

One of the central questions in the public conversation about mental health is about who gets to tell whose story. Do people with lived experience speak for themselves? Do people with certain diagnoses have a voice, while others don’t? Are the stories we hear in advocacy campaigns sanitized? This thought provoking article from New Zealand examines