America’s Mental Health Madness
October 9, 2013 Event Connects Mental Illness Awareness Week and the Great Michigan Read
Pete Earley, former Washington Post reporter and author of Crazy: A Father’s Search Through America’s Mental Health Madness, will speak at Hannah Community Center, 819 Abbot Road, East Lansing, at 7:00 p.m., Wednesday, October 9, 2013, at the invitation of NAMI Lansing, the local affiliate of NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
Earley will speak on the experiences of persons living with mental illness and their families, the incarceration that often occurs in the absence of medical care, and the barriers to providing treatment. His perspective is informed by extensive research on mental health services and the criminal justice system and his personal experience as the father of a son with bipolar disorder.
Earley’s account provides context for Annie’s Ghosts, the book selected by the Michigan Humanities Council as the Great Michigan Read for 2013-2014. Annie’s Ghosts, by Michigan native Steve Luxenberg, a former colleague of Earley’s, describes the stigma, secrecy, and frequent institutionalization of the mentally ill in the mid-twentieth century, factors that kept his aunt’s existence a secret even from her nieces and nephews.
In Michigan it’s estimated that over four times as many people with mental illness are in prison or jail than are in hospitals. Incarceration has replaced the institutionalization described in Annie’s Ghosts. The Great Michigan Read brings statewide attention to mental illness in Michigan and this related event, supported in part by a grant from the Michigan Humanities Council, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, will be held during Mental Illness Awareness Week which is October 6 to 12, 2013.
“America’s Mental Health Madness” is free and open to the public. Refreshments will follow the presentation and Earley will be available to sign his book. Please thank our generous sponsors:
MSU Counseling Center
Michigan State University – Department of Psychiatry
Michigan State University – School of Social Work
Capital Regional Community Foundation
Community Mental Health Authority of
Clinton – Eaton- Ingham
NAMI Lansing, the tri-counties’ voice on mental illness, is an all-volunteer organization that provides family education and support, including weekly support groups for consumers and family members of persons with mental illness. For more information please visit www.namilansing.org or call 517-484-3404.