2016 Press Releases

September 27, 2016 – The Bazelon Center Releases Updated Guide to Protect the Voting Rights of People with Mental Disabilities
Today, a newly-updated voting rights guide for people with mental disabilities was released by the Bazelon Center, the National Disability Rights Network, the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network, and leading law firm Schulte, Roth & Zabel. Read the Press Release (PDF).

August 30, 2016 – Bazelon Center’s Jennifer Mathis Receives 2016 Frances Olivero Advocacy Award Presented by NYAPRS
Bazelon Center Director of Policy and Legal Advocacy Jennifer Mathis is the recipient of the 2016 Frances Olivero Advocacy Award presented by the New York Association of Psychiatric Rehabilitation Services (NYAPRS). The NYAPRS presents the award annually to “an individual who has demonstrated inspiring community leadership and unique contributions in advocacy on behalf of people with psychiatric disabilities.” Read the Press Release (PDF).

August 15, 2016 – Bazelon Center Announces Robert Bernstein’s Retirement After Nearly Two Decades of Groundbreaking Leadership
Today the Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law announced the planned retirement of its longtime CEO, Robert Bernstein, PhD, who has led the Center for nearly 20 years. During his tenure, the Center was responsible for landmark legal and public policy victories that have markedly improved the lives of people with mental illness and disabilities. Read the Press Release (PDF).

June 20, 2016 – Bazelon Center Statement on the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Approval of the Murphy Bill (HR 2646)
The Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law is encouraged that the version of H.R. 2646 that passed out of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on June 15, 2016 omits some of the most harmful provisions of the original bill. However, we continue to have concerns about some aspects of the bill that passed the committee.  Read the Statement (PDF).

May 24, 2016 – Bazelon Center, UMass Medical School Highlight Employment Opportunities for People with Psychiatric Disabilities
A new brief by UMass Medical School and the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law outlines policy opportunities that can be leveraged to expand opportunities for people with psychiatric disabilities to successfully obtain and maintain employment, including increased access to career development, supported employment, and critical health services. Read the Press Release (PDF) | Read the UMASS Outline (PDF)

May 18, 2016 – Bazelon Supports Agreement that Commits Georgia to Improving Community Services for People with Disabilities
The State of Georgia and the United States Department of Justice today filed in federal district court an agreement to expand the capacity and improve the quality of community-based services the State provides to individuals with developmental disabilities and mental illnesses. The Bazelon Center represents nearly a dozen Georgia mental health groups and advocates that participated in crafting the agreement. Read the Press Release (PDF)

May 1, 2016 – Bazelon Center President Robert Bernstein’s Statement on National Mental Health Awareness Month
This year’s National Mental Health Awareness Month gives us all an occasion to reflect on the direction we take on this critically important issue. At the Bazelon Center we devote our resources and our energy fighting to ensure that the nation moves forward on mental health instead of turning back. Read the Press Release (PDF)

February 16, 2016 – Bazelon Joins in Lawsuit Charging Pasadena Schools with Discrimination Against Students with Mental Health Disabilities
Students with mental health needs are denied an equal education as a result of their placement in a segregated school operated by the Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD), according to a class action lawsuit filed in federal court in Los Angeles by the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law and co-counsels. Read the Press Release (PDF)

January 5, 2016 – Bazelon Response to the President’s Executive Actions to Reduce Gun Violence
The Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law is deeply concerned that some of the President’s recently announced actions to address gun violence wrongly target people with mental illness as a significant source of the problem.  Specifically, these proposals include an effort to report individuals with mental illness who have representative payees to manage their Social Security benefits for inclusion in the gun background check database.  People with mental illness are responsible for less than five percent of violence and are not more likely than their neighbors to engage in violence. Read the Press Release (PDF)