Although mental health issues have received greater attention in recent years, most people, including legislators, remain unaware of the issues, concerns, and problems facing the mentally ill and the mental health sector. As a result, issues of mental health are overlooked by the state and federal legislatures. However, mental health is not something that should be overlooked or ignored; rather it is something that all of us unconsciously strive for. By bringing mental health and addiction issues to the fore front, we can achieve greater mental health as a society while improving the overall quality of life and promoting general well-being.

In order to enable our society to more easily achieve mental health, we must make the issues and problems which face both the mentally ill and the mental health profession known. This is what mental health advocacy is all about: we want to draw attention to the issues, so the government and society is more willing to work together to promote mental health. Mental health advocacy is the promoting of mental health through the process of educating others about the issues and creating a greater awareness about what needs to be done to achieve greater societal mental health. We achieve this by spreading our message to everyone, including our legislators, and by calling attention to what needs to be done.

Promoting mental health is not a contentious issue; everyone wants to have mental health and wants to live in a mentally healthy society. Despite this reality, mental health issues still often fail to generate the attention they deserve. People who are mentally healthy often take their condition for granted, and, thus, mental health issues rarely make the spotlight. We need as many people to get involved in mental health advocacy so society does not forget about our common goal of greater mental health. We need you to help us remind our legislators, our neighbors, our co-workers, our friends — everyone. To achieve mental health, our issues must maintain the attention of the general public, and this is why we need you to get involved: we need you to help us remind society about mental health.

Mental health advocacy takes place on a grass roots level in many shapes and forms. With the speed and convenience of the Internet, mental health advocacy is now able to take place at a much faster speed. You can begin your participation in mental health advocacy by e-mailing your politicians from our site, and reminding them about the importance of addressing mental health issues. We urge you to use the tools on The National Drug Helpline site, to learn about the issues and read the legislative alerts, and then begin advocating by finding and e-mailing your legislators.

The Internet is full of wonderful sources for grass roots advocacy and activism. To learn more about some of the many online resources, please visit our resources page.

Although mental health issues are often overlooked, they are very important and need to be addressed. Your online advocacy efforts can have a major impact, and they can help us draw more attention to the issues surrounding mental health. Please get involved and help us spread the message about mental health. When we work together and combine all of our efforts, we can make a big difference for mental health and addiction!