Article2013

Effective Employment of Individuals with Mental Health Conditions: Harnessing National, State, and Local Efforts to Improve Outcomes in New York City


ABSTRACT

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), 60% to 90% of individuals with mental health conditions are unemployed. Employer stigma toward hiring people with mental illness, a lack of local-level professional coordination, and ineffective legal mandates have all contributed to underwhelming employment for many qualified individuals. Employment outcomes of people with mental health conditions may be improved with a two-part, local-level employer awareness and stigma reduction campaign coordinated by social workers and other professionals. This article explores prior and ongoing efforts at the national, state, and local levels, and argues that New York City is a prime location to pilot an employer awareness campaign. Recommendations include details for launching such a campaign by building organizational partnerships to harness existing resources.

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