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Mental Health Awareness Month


What to look for on this episode of Smart Talk:

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Nationwide, 57.7 million Americans – nearly one-in-four – live with some type of mental health condition, and about 20 percent of children have a diagnosable mental illness during a given year.

Since 1949, Mental Health America has run a campaign in May to educate the public about the many forms of mental illness that affect people as well as how to improve mental health.

This year’s campaign focuses on the mind and body and includes topics such as animal companionship, spirituality and religion and work-life balance.

Another issue related to mental health is stigma and discrimination. Though people with mental illness are far more likely to be victims of violent crime than perpetrators, media portrayals often lead to misperceptions that people with mental illnesses are inherently violent. Many employers are also unaware of their rights and responsibilities when it comes to employees with mental health conditions even though workplace stress causes approximately one million employees to miss work each day.

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Dr. Gina Cavorsi (L) and Shalawn James (R)

Joining Smart Talk to discuss a broad range of issues relating to mental health and to answer listener questions about mental health is Shalawn James, Director of Program Advocacy with the Mental Health Association in Pennsylvania, Dr. Gina Cavorsi, Chief Medical Officer, Lancaster Behavioral Health Hospital, and Christine Michaels, CEO National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Keystone Pennsylvania.

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