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Campaign launched to address LGBTQ+ mental health needs

The National Alliance on Mental Illness is addressing the difficulties the LGBTQ+ community faces in accessing mental health resources.
Campaign launched to address LGBTQ+ mental health needs
Posted at 11:29 AM, Jun 02, 2023

With Pride Month getting underway, the National Alliance on Mental Illness launched a program Thursday called Mental Health Without Conditions. 

NAMI says the aim of the initiative is to give a voice to the LGBTQ+ community and address inequities and disparities. The organization said it is encouraging individuals to share their stories and show their pride by tagging NAMI's social media accounts and using the hashtag #IAmNAMIPride. 

NAMI said additionally, its website offers resources for people seeking support. The website includes a list of mental health providers.

"NAMI stands in solidarity with everyone navigating mental health conditions, particularly those within the LGBTQ+ community, who disproportionately experience obstacles to equal care," said NAMI chief innovation officer Darcy Gruttadaro. "Our campaign's core theme, 'I Am NAMI Pride,' isn't merely a slogan — it's a powerful affirmation that underlines our identity. The 'I AM' within 'NAMI' reflects our collective dedication to mental health equity for every individual."

SEE MORE: Calls to reject anti-LGBTQ 'extremism' start Pride Month

Additionally, NAMI said it opposes statewide bans on gender-affirming care as a number of states ban those under age 18 from accessing such treatment. NAMI said transgender individuals are nearly four times as likely to experience a mental health condition, compared to cisgender individuals. 

“For transgender and nonbinary youth, these risks increase dramatically, including a higher likelihood of serious consideration of suicide and actual suicide attempts,” NAMI said in a statement. “Rather than limiting or banning life-saving care, NAMI urges the availability of evidence-based practices that improve mental health outcomes for transgender and nonbinary individuals.”

The Trevor Project released 2023 data indicating the difficulty LGBTQ+ individuals face accessing mental health care. In a survey of 28,000 LGBTQ+ individuals ages 13-24, 56% said they were unable to access mental health services when they needed it in the prior year. The group also found that two-thirds of those asked said potential state or local laws banning people from discussing LGBTQ+ people at school made their mental health a lot worse.

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