News & Alerts

The National Mental Health Consumers' Self-Help Clearinghouse is dedicated to providing you with the most up-to-date information on mental health and consumer issues. In an effort to keep you informed and to respond to your needs, we update our Web site regularly. Look here first to find the latest additions to our site.


Job Opportunity with Howie the Harp Peer Advocacy Center -- Director

Community Access, Inc. is seeking a Director, to guide the growth and expansion of New York City’s preeminent center for peer workforce education and employment, The Howie T. Harp Peer Advocacy and Training Center (HTH). This is a full-time (40hrs per week), senior level position; salary commensurate with experience, and an excellent benefits package.

Agency Overview

Community Access, Inc. (CA) is a progressive not-for-profit organization that for the last 39 years has helped thousands of people diagnosed with psychiatric disabilities to make the transition from hospitals and shelters to independent living. Our primary mission is to identify needs and create solutions for homeless people with psychiatric disabilities. Our programs include over 1000 units of supportive housing in three boroughs, the Howie T. Harp Peer Advocacy Center, East Village Access—a PROS-licensed training program, Parachute NYC – Crisis Respite Center and Support Line, Recovery Connections and the Art Collective.

Position Overview

For 17 years, The Howie T. Harp Peer Advocacy and Training Center (HTH) has provided NYC’s behavioral healthcare workforce with skilled peer staff, leading the transformation of New York’s system of services and supports. Run by professionals who have personal experience with the mental health system, HTH offers an array of supports to help individuals grow as students and workers, acquiring the essential competencies to obtain work and develop careers in peer and health services.

We are looking for an experienced Director to guide the transition of the HTH Center as the training program evolves in response to the needs of managed care, and the demand for a workforce that requires employees with a range of specialized skills. This includes establishing and nurturing relationships with employers to forward peer workforce priorities and pursuing opportunities for career growth through relationships with educational institutions and the attainment of credentials. The Director is a leader, pursuing opportunities for expansion, and influencing developments in the peer movement on a local, state, national and international level. The Director is responsible and accountable for the operation of Center’s programs: the development, co-ordination, implementation and evaluation of programs and projects that promote community participation and citizenship, especially through the advancement of peer staff in the workplace. The Director guides staff performance and ensures full contractual compliance on federal, state and local levels.


Candidates must have an understanding, appreciation, and commitment to the philosophy and mission of Community Access; must identify as a recipient/peer/survivor of mental health services (required); demonstrated leader in the peer community/movement; a minimum of five (5) years of supervisory experience, required; experience with and knowledge of peer workforce issues and the behavioral health system in New York State and City; significant training, technical assistance and curriculum development experience; program development experience, preferred; possess strong understanding of peer practices, recovery and wellness; must be fingerprinted and cleared by the Office of Mental Health (OMH); willing to travel and work some evenings and weekends as needed; possess advanced analytical and innovative problem solving abilities; demonstrated leadership skills and ability to work as part of a team.

Bilingual candidates are encouraged to apply.

Interested candidates must send a cover letter and resume (which must include salary requirements and salary history) to: 

    • Community Access, 2 Washington Street, 9th floor, NY, NY 10004 – Attn: HR Dept.

    • Email • Fax to 212-937-3980


Community Access is an Equal Opportunity Employer. M/F/D/V.

Women, People of Color and Members of the LGBT community are strongly encouraged to apply.

CA is committed to the hiring of at least 51% consumer staff, in all of its departments and programs, and at all levels of management.


TU Collaborative Publishes Guide to Help People Find and Keep Jobs

“A Practical Guide for People with Mental Health Conditions Who Want to Work” has been published by the Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion. The Guide, available at, offers “encouragement and vital information on the importance of work, the availability of rehabilitation programs, the ins and outs of the Social Security Administration's work incentives, the challenges of starting a new job and grappling with disclosure, and strategies for long-term success at work – and more.” The TU Collaborative has also published a “Facilitator’s Manual,” available at



Extended Deadlines for Award Nominations Approach

Four award deadlines have been extended. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has pushed the deadline for 2013 Voice Award nominations to this Friday, March 29: “If you know a consumer/peer leader who has led efforts to promote the social inclusion of people with behavioral health problems; personally demonstrated that recovery is real and possible; and made a positive impact on his/her community, workplace, or school, please nominate him/her for a 2013 Voice Award.” The nomination form is available at the first source below. (Additionally, you can nominate a TV or film production that contains “a dignified, respectful, and accurate portrayal of people with mental health and/or substance use disorders.” The deadline for these nominations is April 15, 2013.) Meanwhile, Mental Health America (MHA) has just extended the deadline for its 2013 Sandy Brandt Volunteer, Youth Advocacy, and Clifford Beers awards to April 15. For more information about MHA’s awards, go to the second source below.



BRSS TACS Offers Peer-Run Reorganization/Recovery Community Organization Awards

SAMHSA’s BRSS TACS (Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy) initiative is offering six Peer-Run Organization/Recovery Community Organization Awards. Six applicants will be chosen to receive $25,000, six-month subcontracts to develop/adapt and disseminate information to promote best practices and emerging practices in peer-driven recovery supports, provide training and educational activities, or plan/develop infrastructure to establish peer-delivered recovery supports. In addition, BRSS TACS will provide the six recipients with technical assistance and training. Information about the award opportunity is available at the following link: The deadline for applications is April 25, 2013.



SAMHSA Offers Reports on Incidence of Smoking among Individuals with Mental Health Conditions

Adults with mental health conditions and/or substance use disorders account for some 40 percent of all cigarettes that are smoked, despite being roughly a quarter of the general population, studies show. In February 2013, SAMHSA issued a joint “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (available here: with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about the high prevalence of smoking among those with mental health conditions. A new report – published on March 20, 2013, and available here– adds additional information.