The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline: Playing a Vital Role in Building a Crisis Care Continuum

Ease of access to crisis care and a lack of funds to sustain operations of local, backup, and specialized crisis centers have long posed tremendous challenges to our behavioral health system. But on July 16, 2022, the nation went some way towards addressing that with the transition to the new, easy...

How We as Practitioners Can Foster Stigma

Practitioners, despite our best intentions, may unconsciously foster stigma by downplaying or not recognizing the ways in which power dynamics, implicit bias, stereotypes, and lack of cultural humility can all build barriers to care. To illustrate the stigmatizing potential of a...

Internalized Stigma

Stigma around mental health is not an unfamiliar conversation in professional circles and, thanks to the hard work of countless teams and individuals, stigma is becoming a more common conversation in our communities, albeit a recent conversation. Prior to this work, stigma didn’t have a context...

Behavioral Health Volunteering in Times of Crisis

When a call for support goes out at the onset of a disaster, we commonly recognize the basic needs: shelter, food, water, clothing. Behavioral health needs – mental, emotional, and spiritual care – have been an afterthought, if included in the response plan at all. This is beginning to shift....

When Staff Burnout Prevents Progress

After nearly two years of facing COVID-19 waves and realities, healthcare workers are facing unprecedented levels of burnout. Providing important support, resources and space for staff can help prevent this and other acute stress responses from turning into longer term behavioral health...

Secondary Traumatic Stress: A Key Piece of the Conversation

The personal impact of being in the helping profession never crossed my mind when I was in graduate school on my way to becoming a social worker. My focus was on gleaning what I could from my professors and building what I hoped would be the most complete set of clinical skills. I was unaware at...

The Social Determinants of Help-Seeking for Young Men of Color

Vibrant Emotional Health provides clinical case management and crisis intervention services to young men of color (YMOC) in The Fellowship Initiative, a college attainment program for YMOC in New York City, Chicago, Dallas, and Los Angeles, funded and operated by the JPMorgan Chase Foundation. Our...

Socially Connected, Physically Distanced: How to Be There for Someone Experiencing Suicidal or Emotional Crisis During COVID-19

While everyone is feeling challenged during COVID-19, it can be particularly difficult for those with existing mental health conditions or people who feel particularly lonely or isolated due to COVID-19. “Social distancing” recommendations, concerns about their own health and the health of...

Anticipating Emotional Reactions During the Covid-19 Pandemic: What We Can Learn from Past Disasters

The national Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) was launched by Vibrant Emotional Health and the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in 2012 to guarantee that everyone in the United States has access to immediate crisis counseling and support throughout any phase...

Aging in Supportive Housing: One Fall Away from Institutionalization

Lucy is a 62-year-old woman who has lived in supportive housing for over a decade. She has been treated for bipolar I disorder and has a history of suicidality. Like many older adults with mental health challenges, Lucy has several chronic health problems which are monitored by her primary care...