Improving the Quality of Life for People with Mental Illness

CFYM Note: Mental Health Advocate Profile posts allow CFYM to highlight an organization’s broader range of advocacy interests and concerns. Today’s profile features the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).

Any organizations seeking to be featured in a CFYM Mental Health Advocate Profile should submit information about current legislative interests and activities to We welcome your submissions!


NAMI is a grassroots organization of individuals with mental illnesses, especially serious mental illnesses, their family members, and friends whose mission is to advocate for effective prevention, diagnosis, treatment, support, research, and recovery to improve the quality of life of persons of all ages who are affected by mental illnesses.

NAMI advocates for the most effective and appropriate care and treatment and provision of services for people who experience a mental illness. NAMI’s priority populations are children, youth, and adults with serious mental illnesses who need services and support, often throughout their lives.

NAMI has an extensive and detailed public policy platform.

NAMI highlights these policy issues:

CFYM readers will recall our post on access to prescription drugs. In it, Andrew Sperling, NAMI’s Director of Legislative Advocacy, proposes measures to ensure that patients are able to get, and for insurance to cover, the most appropriate medication for their treatment.

Among its other recent activities, this past June NAMI submitted comments to the Office of Civil Rights at the US Department of Health and Human Services, raising objections to amendments to patient privacy law for purposes of criminal background checks associated with purchasing firearms and ammunition.

Interested in learning more about NAMI? Visit NAMI’s website at

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