National Eating Disorders Association
Blog

Help us Pass Mental Health Reform!

Kerry Donohue, Public Policy Manager

It has been a historic year for eating disorders advocacy at the federal level. When the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act (H.R. 2646) passed the House in July, it was a monumental stride for those struggling with eating disorders, their loved ones and the health professionals working to help them recover, as it was the first time a bill of its kind had passed at the federal level. However, we are not done yet! The bill’s counterpart in the Senate, The Mental Health Reform Act (S.2680) still needs to pass this year, and we need your voices to help bring it to the finish line!

Congress is about to enter the “lame duck session,” which is the period between the election and when the new Congress convenes in 2017. Any bill that is not passed by BOTH the House and Senate before the end of this year would have to start the process all over again next year. These important mental health and eating disorders reforms have come so far, and we need to make sure we don’t lose the momentum that we have worked so hard to build! 

This legislation could have a huge impact on the eating disorders community. The bill aims to expand access to mental health services, including eating disorders treatment. It also aims to combat suicide in our schools and communities, increase the mental health workforce, strengthen the enforcement of mental health parity law, invest in early intervention, integrate health and mental health care, and strengthen the community crisis response system, among other things.

The bill, which is led by Senator Alexander, Senator Murray, Senator Cassidy and Senator Murphy, passed the Senate HELP Committee with unanimous, bipartisan support on March 16, 2016 and is waiting for the full Senate to vote on it. 

How can you help?

We need you to call your senators to tell them that we need their support to bring mental health reform to the floor this year!

Call your Senator TODAY!

Dial (202) 224-3121. Press #1 and enter your zip code.

Here’s our suggested message: As a constituent, I would like the Senator to demand a vote on S. 2680, the Mental Health Reform Act. Mental health parity laws are being broken every day. This bill will help.

Tweet at your Senator!

Here is a sample tweet you can use:

Dear @(Senator’s twitter handle)- I urge you to help support the #MentalHealthReform Act, S.2680. It will help those with eating disorders.

Remember, your legislators were elected to represent YOU, and they are interested in hearing about the issues that are important to you. Your voice truly can make a difference in the fight against eating disorders!

 

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