From December 4, 2005, through February 4, 2006, local ABC-TV stations will be showing -- at their discretion -- Shadow Voices: Finding Hope in Mental Illness, a one-hour documentary about stigma, spirituality, and recovery that features interviews with several NAMI consumers and family leaders.
Local stations will decide for themselves whether and when to broadcast the documentary. Local broadcast dates are listed on the Shadow Voices Web site, along with a list of the "voices" included in the documentary and excerpts from their interviews.
If your ABC station is not listed, please contact the station manager or programming director through the ABC network Web site to encourage them to air Shadow Voices, an ABC "Vision and Values" documentary produced by the National Council of Churches, before the February 4 deadline. Let stations know that people in your community are eager to see the documentary. Offer to help publicize the broadcast date through local NAMIs, churches, or other networks.
It is also important to thank stations already on the list, even those stations that have scheduled the documentary to air after midnight or before dawn. Expressions of community support for even marginal time slots will help influence later programming decisions involving mental illness topics. Let stations know that people are eager to see the film.
Copies of the documentary will also be available after December 15, 2005, in VHS ($19.95) or DVD ($24.95) format, plus shipping and handling. Call Mennonite Media at 1-800/999-3534 for more information.
A recent National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) study has suggested that "new generation" antipsychotic medications are no more effective than older medications in treating schizophrenia, raising concerns that the study will be used to restrict open access to newer medications under Medicaid or managed care.
NAMI wants to hear from consumers or family members describing the difference that newer medications have made in their lives. Please send your short, personal story to firstname.lastname@example.org, including your name, age, city and state, telephone number, diagnosis, treatment history, and relevant details.
NAMI will consider all stories for use in testimony, media interviews, or other advocacy efforts. All submissions remain confidential. They will not be used without further contact and direct authorization.
Stella March, National Coordinator
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