Fifty two key leaders from across the country gathered in Philadelphia to take part in the Opening Closed Doors Conference on June 18th and 19th. The attendees included leadership from the American Psychiatric Association (APA), the American Psychological Association(APA), the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the National Office of Mental Health America (previously Mental Health Association), the National Office of National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), One Mind for Research, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration (SAMHSA), The Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, and several City and State Governments (California, New York, Florida, Ohio, Texas, Pennsylvania). Numerous academic and hospital institutions were present including: Brown University, Columbia University, Drexel University, Harvard University, New York University, Temple University, University of Connecticut, University of Maryland, University of Pennsylvania, University of Southern California, University of Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Yale University. Consumers and family members from across the country also participated and were an integral part of the meeting.
The principal goal of this conference and its continued work is to establish a forceful, vocal coalition of families and advocates to pursue clear goals and plans that can 'open closed doors' that improve the lives of people with mental illness, their families and their communities.
The meeting concluded with a set of feasible goals for both Privacy and Liberty Issues. These will be developed into work plans, with clear objectives, partners, milestones, and potential and actual resources. The work plans will be released in September 2013. During the summer the group will use the time to solicit stories and examples of innovative and effective efforts to 'open closed doors' from attendees and others.