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Discussion Papers

Documents in this section outline and discuss the effectiveness of current mental health policies and legislation.

January 1, 2009 Out of the Shadows Forever: Annual Report 2008-2009

The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) was created by the federal government in its budget of March 2007. The goal of the MHCC is to help bring into being an integrated mental health system that places people living with mental illness at its centre. To this end, the Commission encourages cooperation and collaboration among governments, mental health service providers, employers, the scientific and research communities, as well as Canadians living with mental illness, their families and caregivers. In this, the MHCC’s inaugural Annual Report, we are eager to share with Canadians the progress that has been made towards accomplishing our mandate.

June 3, 2008 Out of the Shadows and Toward Recovery: Are We Getting There?

In June 2008, CMHA responded to the 2006 Out of the Shadows report with a position paper, “Out of the Shadows Redux”. Now that the Commission has released its draft framework for a national strategy, we are returning with a follow-up submission. We begin with a brief summary of CMHA’s previous messages.

January 3, 2008 Making Sense of Health Rankings

From time to time, health ranking reports are published giving widely varying indications of Canadians’ health and health care systems—are we fifth in the world or twenty-fifth? This raises the question, “Which ranking is more meaningful?” This special methodological report will help readers understand and assess reports that rank the health status or health system performance of a country, province or jurisdiction. This paper outlines the components and processes that underlie health rankings and explores why such rankings can be difficult to interpret. The report also includes a plain-language checklist to use as a critical evaluative resource when reading health-ranking reports.

May 8, 2007 Men and Mental Illness

It’s being called a silent crisis, a sleeper issue. But there are signs that this sleeper is at last awakening. Around the world studies, surveys, web networks, journals and newspaper articles are shedding light on a shadowy subject: men’s mental health.

February 3, 2006 ‘Out of the Shadows’ Redux

In this paper, CMHA starts the discussion of bridging from Out of the Shadows to a national strategy by proposing components of a more coherent approach that uses the recovery vision in Out of the Shadows as a unifying thread to connect all the pieces, and develops a theoretical framework that distinguishes services and supports throughout the document, highlighting determinants of health and other community-based approaches (such as the role of NGOs) outside the realm of formal government services. We present these key recommendations, along with examples of related gaps in the Out of the Shadows report, and some specific suggestions for action.

January 31, 2006 Home Care and Mental Health: From Policy to Action

In Toronto on January 29th – 31st, 2006, the CMHA National, the Canadian Association for Community Care and the Canadian Home Care Association, held a Policy Forum on Home Care and Mental Health.  This Forum brought together key stakeholders from governments, service providers, consumers of mental health services, families, health professionals and community-based organizations for discussions that will advance the policy agenda for mental health home care.

April 30, 2005 Home Care and Mental Health: Web Discussion Analysis

The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), National Office hosted a web discussion throughout March and April 2005 to promote a dialogue on mental health and home care: key issues and policy implications. The web discussion touched on many of the important elements to be considered in developing mental health and home care policies.

April 1, 2004 A Framework for Strategic Planning

A Framework for Strategic Planning offers background information and relevant examples to provide policy direction for early intervention in psychosis. It describes key elements that should be considered by policy makers, providers and other stakeholders.

December 8, 2003 Citizens for Mental Health: National Synthesis Forum Final Report

In June 2002, CMHA National, building on work by the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health (CAMIMH), embarked upon an ambitious 22-month project, Citizens for Mental Health. On September 19-20, 2003, 28 project participants from across Canada met in Toronto to further refine the recommended actions related to the common issues identified through the regional forums and, through this process, contribute to the development of a national mental health policy framework. This report documents that two-day session.

December 1, 2001 Position Paper on Federal Income Security Programs

This 2001 position paper provides an analysis on why the issues of people with serious mental illness should be on the Federal income support agenda. It provides a thorough understanding of how current Federal income security programs operate in order to identify ways they might be improved so that people with serious mental illness can have access to adequate income and a decent quality of life. The policy recommendations put forward in this document are intended for use as advocacy tools, and may suggest opportunities for collaboration with other national disability groups.