Issues: Mental Health

NY Daily News: Sexual orientation conversion therapy victims speak out at hearing for banning the practice on minors

May 15, 2014 : By Corinne LestchWhen Mathew Shurka came out as gay at 16, his father thought he could be cured.Shurka was sent to a sex orientation conversion therapist, who told him he would be straight in six weeks. The process involved cutting off contact with his mother and sisters to limit his interactions with women.At a hearing Thursday, Shurka recounted the depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts he experienced after his long string of so-called therapy sessions with several licensed mental health professionals.

May 16, 2014
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New York State Senators Brad Hoylman & Michael Gianaris and New York State Assembly Member Deborah Glick, Hold Public Forum on Legislation Barring Sexual Orientation Change “Therapy” for Minors

New York, NY – New York State Senators Brad Hoylman & Michael Gianaris, and New York State Assembly Member Deborah Glick today held a legislative forum in New York City to address the merits of their legislation (S.4917-B/A.6983-B) to prohibit sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE) by licensed mental health professionals in New York State.SOCE, or so-called “conversion therapy” or “reparative therapy,” has long been discredited by leading associations of health and mental health practitioners, and has been shown to have harmful long-term effects on the well-being and mental health of LGBT youth.

May 16, 2014
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Committee Meeting: Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Meeting

Senate Standing Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Senator David Carlucci, Chair 9:30 AM, Wednesday, May 21, 2014 Room 816 LOB

May 21, 9:30 AM - 9:45 AM
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Panel on Senator Perkins' Bill: Humane Alternatives to Long Term Solitary Confinement Act

Time Warner Cable News| Liz Benjamin| May 8, 2014| 3:25PM

Senator Perkins participates in a panel discussion on his Humane Alternatives to Long Term Confinement Act (HALT Solitary Confinement Act). The Act would prohibit the use of solitary confinement for youth, elderly, pregnant and postpartum women, LGBTI individuals, and individuals with certain mental health conditions as well as restricts the use of Solitary confinement as a discplinary method for all incarcerated individuals in favor of more therapuetic treatment. To view the full panel discussion please click here 

May 8, 2014
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Senate Unanimously Passes Senator Parker's Bill to Protect Mentally Disabled Persons Living in Community Residences

(Brooklyn, NY) – In a unanimous vote on Tuesday May 6, State Senator Kevin Parker’s bill, S.955, passed the Senate. The bill clarifies that the discharge of a resident from a community residence licensed or operated by the Office of Mental Health (OMH) or the Office of People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) shall not be considered a landlord / tenant matter, as opposed to be governed by regulations aimed at creating the best therapeutic outcome for such a resident.

May 7, 2014
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Committee Meeting: Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Meeting

Senate Standing Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Senator David Carlucci, Chair 1:00 PM, Tuesday, April 29, 2014 Room 816 LOB

April 29, 1:00 PM - 1:11 PM
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SURGE IN HEROIN IS FOCUS OF FRIDAY FORUM IN WATERTOWN

Bipartisan Senate Task Force Gathering Experts to Tackle Growing Problem

In an effort to fight the growing problem of heroin usage, State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced she will host a public forum on heroin and opioid addiction in Watertown on Friday, April 25th. 

April 22, 2014
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Otsego County Mental Health Concerns Under The Microscope

ONEONTA, 04/17/14 -- State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) today commented on a meeting he convened of local stakeholders to discuss the future of emergency psychiatric services in Otsego County and the surrounding region: 

“The decision by Bassett Medical center to terminate inpatient psychiatric services has wide-ranging consequences.  Today’s meeting of local stakeholders included a brief summary of what led to the decision, and more importantly, allowed for an open dialogue on actions to be taken to fill the pending treatment void.

April 17, 2014
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RITCHIE: STATE BUDGET WILL EXPAND NORTH COUNTRY MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES

Includes Funding for Treatment of Up to 270 Additional Residents

State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced the new State Budget reaffirms the state’s commitment to the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center and provides for the expansion of mental health services in the North Country. 

Contained in the recently-enacted spending plan is $44 million in new funding for community-based mental health care, including $3.85 million in new funds for the creation and expansion of community-based mental health services in the North Country.  The additional aid will provide treatment for up to 270 additional North Country residents.

“The North Country community fought long and hard for the protection of the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center and the vitally important services the facility provides to those struggling with mental health issues and their families,” said Senator Ritchie.

April 11, 2014
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Senator Gallivan's Family Health & Safety Fair

Free health screenings & safety information from the following:

April 26, 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
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SENATOR VALESKY HAILS PASSAGE OF FOURTH CONSECUTIVE ON-TIME STATE BUDGET

ALBANY, NY—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) today lauded the passage of the state’s fourth and historic consecutive on-time budget. This has not been accomplished with the same Governor and legislative leaders in more than 40 years.

April 1, 2014
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March 26, 7:00 PM - 7:07 PM
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March 20, 9:30 AM - 9:40 AM
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March 17, 1:30 PM - 2:21 PM
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RITCHIE, CITY HALL UNVEIL PLAN TO CREATE JOBS AND OPPORTUNITY AT PSYCH CENTER CAMPUS

'Land Transfer' Bill Aims to Get Unused Land Back on the Tax Rolls, Help Community Grow

State Senator Patty Ritchie announced she will be introducing legislation next week to transfer 160 vacant acres of surplus land at the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center to the City of Ogdensburg as part of a long-term comprehensive program to redevelop the campus.

Senator Ritchie has been working with Ogdensburg Mayor William Nelson and City Manager John Pinkerton over the past two months to develop a plan to transform blighted properties at the 125-year-old Psychiatric Center into economic development assets to create opportunities for new jobs and growth.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE POWERPOINT PRESENTATION ON THE SLPC CAMPUS PLAN

The proposal was endorsed by the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center Task Force on Thursday.  The Ogdensburg City Council will consider a proposal to endorse the plan Monday.

Senator Ritchie will present the legislation to members of State Assembly and State Senate delegation representing St. Lawrence County in the state legislature on Wednesday to seek their support. Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell has announced her support for the plan.

February 21, 2014
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Tkaczyk: OMH Shortchanges Community Mental Health Reinvestment

State Senator Cecilia Tkaczyk today disputed claims by the NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH) about the savings to be generated from the planned downsizing of the State’s psychiatric hospital system. By underestimating those savings, the agency is shortchanging the “Community Mental Health Reinvestment Program” by millions of dollars.

The Executive Budget proposes closing 399 beds and OMH estimates annual savings per bed to be $110,000 -- a total savings of about $43 million annually.

However, holding a billing statement from the state Office of Mental Health (OMH) Senator Tkaczyk noted that the daily rate for an inpatient bed in a state psychiatric hospital is more than $1,100, yielding annual savings of $408,000 per bed.

February 13, 2014
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Tkaczyk Mental Health Reinvestment Measure Moves Through Committee

State Senator Cecilia Tkaczyk’s legislation to strengthen the State’s community-based mental health services has been reported from the Senate Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities.

Senator Tkaczyk last year introduced the “Communities of Excellence Mental Health Reinvestment Act,” which would take money saved from consolidation of the State’s psychiatric hospital system and use it to ensure that our community-based services are appropriately funded.

Similar legislation was introduced this year by Senator David Carlucci, Chairman of the Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, together with Senator Tkaczyk, Ranking Democratic member on the committee, and Senator Thomas Libous, the former chair of the committee.

February 13, 2014
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Proposed Legislation to Create Guidelines for Treatment of Abuse Victims

Senator Phil Boyle sponsors bill to avoid re-traumatization of sexual assault victims by sharing treatment sessions with offenders 

February 2, 2014 - Albany, NY:  In an effort to provide a safe and non-threatening outpatient treatment environment for sexual abuse victims, Senator Phil Boyle is sponsoring “Victim Safe Treatment” Bill (S.4251).  The primary purpose of this bill is to create guidelines and procedures that prevent additional victimization of sexual offense victims while receiving mental health or chemical dependence treatment.

February 4, 2014
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Committee Meeting: Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Meeting

Senate Standing Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities  Senator David Carlucci, Chair  Tuesday, February 4, 2014  Room 816 LOB

PLEASE NOTE CHANGE IN DATE AND TIME OF THIS MEETING.  THIS MEETING WILL BE HELD IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING SESSION. 

February 4, 4:27 PM - 4:34 PM
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