Erie County Anti-Stigma Coalition Creates Community Conversation Platform
to Stop Stigma Surrounding Mental Health
Cornerstone of Campaign is Website http://WWW.LETSTALKSTIGMA.ORG
Millennium team members Andrea Wanat, MA, CPP, Director of Behavioral Health, far left, and Kimberly Backey, MBA, Manager of Cultural Competency & Diversity Initiatives, far right, joined Karl Shallowhorn, Director of Community Advocacy, Mental Health Association of Erie County and Compeer of Buffalo; Michael Ranney, Erie County Commissioner of Mental Health; and Mark Poloncarz, Erie County Executive at the Anti-Stigma Campaign announcement.
On May 30, the Erie County Anti-Stigma Coalition officially launched “Join the Conversation,” a public awareness campaign to address the stigma surrounding mental illness. The campaign is designed to start a community conversation to educate the public on the real facts surrounding mental illness and give those who suffer a voice in an effort to reduce or eliminate stigma in Erie County.
Fifteen well-known community organizations — including Millennium Collaborative Care — came together in the fall of 2015 to form the coalition.
“We came together in the pursuit of one common goal,” said Coalition Chair, Max Donatelli, “to change how people in our community view mental illness in order to reduce or eliminate stigma in Erie County and Western New York.”
Mental illness is a disease. As with any disease, prevention, early intervention and treatment save lives. Stigma is a known barrier to seeking and receiving treatment. The coalition believes normalizing the conversation around mental health issues is the first step in helping those who suffer get help and leads to creating a healthier community for all.
The campaign is being funded by The Patrick P. Lee Foundation, The Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation, Erie County Department of Mental Health and the donations and in-kind services of the coalition founding partners.
Facebook Photo Album: https://www.facebook.com/pg/MCCPPS/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1202101446579983