Reducing Stigma

The US Surgeon General reported in 1999 that the stigma of receiving mental health treatment “leads others to avoid living, socializing or working with, renting to, or employing people with mental disorders. . . . It reduces patients’ access to resources and opportunities (e.g., housing, jobs) and leads to low self-esteem, isolation, and hopelessness. . . . In its most overt and egregious form, stigma results in outright discrimination and abuse. More tragically, it deprives people of their dignity and interferes with their full participation in society.”

Three members of MHA-Kentucky’s board of directors are available individually or as a group to speak to community groups about the stigma against mental illness, the effectiveness of treatment, and the promise of recovery.