President Obama Meets with NAMI Minnesota’s Executive Director

19 Feb

http://www.nami.org/template.cfm?Section=Top_Story&template=/ContentManagement/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=151070&lstid=809

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Excerpted from NAMI’s website, story by Media Relations Director Bob Carolla:

“On Feb. 11, the President visited Minneapolis where he met with a small group that included the U.S. attorney general, the mayor,  the governor, the state’s two U.S. Senators—and NAMI Minnesota executive director, Sue Abderholden.  Before the meeting, NAMI also held a press conference at the state capitol to build support for a dozen bills that were being introduced to improve mental health care for children.

‘The attorney general was there before the president and talked about gun control, the need for mental health services and how most people with mental illnesses aren’t violent and we need to be careful to not stigmatize people,’ Abderholden reported. ‘When it was my turn, I thanked him for saying that and then talked about school-linked mental health services and the need for intensive treatment for first episodes.’

About one-half hour later the president arrived and shook everyone’s hand. The mayor directed the conversation.  Abderholden was one of the last ones to speak. ‘I told him that in 1961 President Kennedy challenged our nation to go to the moon and eight years later we did. On Feb. 5, 1963 he challenged our country to build a community mental health system and 50 years later we are still waiting.'”

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