New Book Encourages Community Action to Rescue the Mentally Ill

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Larry Hayes has written a book that rescues mental illness from the shadows and appeals to people in local communities to help their neighbors triumph over mental disorders so everyone may benefit.

Communities can help people overcome mental illness by spreading awareness and assistance as modeled by award-winning author and mental illness advocate, Larry Hayes in "Mental Illness and Your Town" (ISBN 9781932690767, Loving Healing Press, 2008).

"Mental Illness and Your Town" is a roadmap for individuals to advocate within their community to help those who suffer to find relief, joy and a return to normalcy. Written with authority and compassion, author Larry Hayes retells the stories of people who have triumphed over mental illness and how local communities can transform themselves so the mentally ill are cared for in a manner that benefits everyone.

Anyone concerned about the mentally ill will find "Mental Illness and Your Town" a revealing study of how individuals and communities can fight for a treatment revolution to enrich and save lives. Hayes discusses not only the history of mental illness and how the closing of institutions have relegated mental illness to doctor's offices, but why more funding is needed and more community education is imperative to improve the current situation.

Hayes writes with first-hand knowledge about mental illness, having been hospitalized himself with depression, and having watched family members struggle with mental illness. Hayes calls people to lobby locally for the mentally ill by writing to newspaper editors, becoming involved in local chapters of NAMI (National Association for the Mentally Ill), and inviting experts on mental illness to speak to local organizations and churches. Mental illness affects everyone in a community directly or indirectly. The time has come for this illness to be understood and for action to be taken to resolve the situation at the community level.

Experts applaud "Mental Illness and Your Town." Stephen C. McCaffrey, President of Mental Health America of Indiana declares, "Larry Hayes provides families with a real self-help manual that is personal and compassionate, yet practical and hands-on." Pete Early, author of "CRAZY: A Father's Search Through America's Mental Health Madness" says, "Larry Hayes uses his family's story to offer practical suggestions about how communities can help persons with mental illnesses recover and thrive. This is a wonderful blueprint…." James Howell, Ph.D. and Juvenile child researcher, states, "Larry Hayes demonstrates…the ability to reduce complex social problems to simple terms. In addition, he fills the book with practical solutions and ways to reduce the sometimes debilitating effects of mental illness."

About the Author
Larry Hayes has won over fifty state and national awards for editorials and columns in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette. In 1986, he was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in recognition of his editorials challenging his city to desegregate its schools. Hayes was instrumental in Indiana's victorious fight to win parity of health insurance for persons with a mental illness. He introduced the Crisis Intervention Team to help city police better respond to mental health crises, and he won support for the creation of the Suicide Prevention Council and a county-wide Mental Health Coordinating Council. Hayes played a key role in building public support for the Carriage House, a highly acclaimed rehabilitation center, and he successfully lobbied Indiana University Purdue University, Fort Wayne to create the Institute for Behavior Studies. Hayes is also the author of the memoir "Monday I'll Save the World."

"Mental Illness and Your Town" (ISBN 9781932690767, Loving Healing Press, 2008) can be purchased through local and online bookstores. For more information including podcasts, visit http://www.communitymentalhealth.us. Publicity contact: http://www.ReaderViews.com. Review copies available upon request.

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