Friday, October 2, 2009

Quick quiz--what do the following political and social leaders have in common: Abraham Lincoln, Dorothea Dix, Winston Churchill, Florence Nightingale, Abbie Hoffman?

Give up? They all lived with a serious mental illness.

As social work leaders, one of our tasks is to be inclusive, not to dismiss anyone because of their label. Mental illness is one of the most difficult labels to live with; the stigma in our society against people who live with mental illnesses is severe. This despite the fact that 1 in 4 of us will experience a mental illness in our lifetime.

October 4-10 is National Mental Illness Awareness Week. So take a little time, learn more about mental illnesses, read about recovery, and step forward to dispel myths and decrease stigma.

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