Please consider making an organizational and/or individual endorsements on a letter below (and attached) to Congress calling for the Introduction and Enactment of the "Resilience for All Act of 2021."
The deadline for endorsing the letter is September 30.
To the Honorable Chuck Schumer Majority Leader United States Senate 322 Hart Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510
To the Honorable Mitch McConnell Minority Leader United States Senate 317 Russell Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510
To the Honorable Nancy Pelosi, House Speaker United States House of Representatives, 1236 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, DC 20510
To the Honorable Kevin McCarthy, Minority Leader United States House of Representatives, 2468 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC 20510
Re: Request to Introduce and Enact the "Resilience for All Act of 2021"
Dear Leader Schumer, Speaker Pelosi, Leader McConnell, and Leader McCarthy:
We, the undersigned organizations and individuals, request that you introduce and enact the "Resilience for All Act of 2021" this Congress. This urgently needed policy will, for the first time ever, make preventing and healing mental health and psychosocial problems among the entire population through community-based initiatives a national priority. It will achieve that goal by expanding our existing approach to mental health by authorizing, supporting, and funding community-based, equitable and just, culturally-tailored initiatives that enhance the capacity for psychological and emotional wellness and resilience of all adults and children nationwide.
The "Resilience for All Act of 2021" is urgently needed because the skyrocketing mental health and psychosocial impacts generated by the Covid-19 pandemic has exposed the glaring limitations of our nation's current approach to mental health. One of the deficiencies is that clinical treatment and direct service programs are crisis and illness focused and assist individuals only after they show symptoms of pathology. While important, they do not enhance the skills, strengths, social connections, and other protective factors needed to prevent and heal mental health and psychosocial problems. In addition, many people can't pay for clinical therapy, or won't because they see it as only for the mentally impaired or weak, as a luxury for the rich, conflicting with religious or spiritual beliefs, have cultural mistrust, or fear being stigmatized if they become involved. Further, many injustices and biases are embedded in the system that adversely affect African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans and other BIPOCs.
Unless Congress enacts the "Resilience for All Act of 2021" the climate emergency will make pandemic-generated mental health and psychosocial problems seem trivial. As the August 9 2021 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change made clear, temperatures will continue to rise and expose every American to unprecedented disruptions to the ecological, social and economic systems they rely on for food, water, jobs, income, shelter, health, safety, and other basic needs. In addition, every year 20-30 percent of the population will be impacted by more frequent, extreme, or prolonged heat waves, wildfires, storms, floods, storm surges, sea level rise, or other record disasters.
Left unaddressed, the mental health and psychosocial problems generated by climate impacts will mushroom to levels far beyond anything the U.S. has ever experienced. The harmful reactions will profoundly affect the health, safety, and daily functioning of every adult and child. They will also greatly increase physical illnesses and diseases. And, they will significantly raise costs for families, businesses, and all levels of government.
These impacts are bad enough. Just as troubling is that, left unaddressed, the fear-based self-protective survival reactions of millions of Americans generated by climate impacts will hinder efforts to slash greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the climate crisis--and many other problems--to manageable levels.
All the individualized clinical treatment programs in the world will never stem the rising tide of perilous mental health and psychosocial problems unless an equal or greater emphasis is placed on enhancing the capacity for psychological and emotional wellness and resilience among the entire population. A public health and prevention science approach is needed to accomplish this, which is what the "Resilience for All Act of 2021" will authorize and fund.
A public health approach addresses mental health and psychosocial problems by strengthening protective factors that counter the forces that undermine health, safety, and wellness. It takes a population-level approach, not one that merely focused on treating high risk individuals, with a special focus on those that are typically unrepresented. And it prioritizes preventing problems, not treating them only after they appear. I
Prevention science expands the public health approach by showing that mental health and psychosocial problems can be prevented and that wellness and resilience can be enhanced. A growing consensus in the field finds that the most effective and efficient way to accomplish this is through community-based initiatives.
Numerous community-based trauma prevention, wellness, and resilience programs exist in the U.S. They engage a broad and diverse group of local residents and organizations in planning, implementing, and continually improving a range of age and culturally-tailored actions that strengthen existing and establish additional protective factors that build and sustain the capacity for wellness and resilience among all adults, adolescents, and children. Mental health and human service professionals typically support the local efforts, not lead them, while also assisting people who still cannot function or are at risk of harming themselves or others.
Clinical treatment and direct human service programs will remain very important. However, when never-before-seen-before adversities such as those produced by the climate emergency threaten everyone, community-based, equitable and just, culturally-tailored, population-level initiatives are a smarter, more efficient, and cost-effective way to prevent and heal mental health and psychosocial problems than relying solely on individualized clinical treatment and direct service programs.
For these reasons we urge you to swiftly expand our nation's approach to preventing and healing mental health and psychosocial problems by introducing and enacting the "Resilience for All Act of 2021."
Thank you for considering this request.
To sign the letter go to the links on this website: http://www.theresourceinnovationgroup.org/
Deadline for signing the letter is September 30, 2021