A Rich History of Advocacy at the State, National, and International Levels
With the assistance of our members, we develop resolutions, position statements, and policy briefs. We have co-sponsored and participated in Congressional Briefings on a variety of topics.
Founded in 1923, the Global Alliance for Behavioral Health and Social Justice (founded as the American Orthopsychiatric Association) advocates for policies, practices, and research aimed at preventing behavioral health disorders and promoting conditions to ensure that people with disorders can be full participants in society.
Historically, the Alliance has been a “heterogeneous ‘community’ of individuals drawn together because of a common interest—dedication to the study of human behavior broadly conceived and its relationship to mental health service delivery” (Shore and Mannino, 1975).
And, in the past, we have participated in amicus curiae briefs on such important topics as the right to adequate treatment, discrimination against individuals with mental retardation, discrimination against individuals with prior hospitalizations for mental health treatment, competency to consent to treatment, and the death penalty for individuals with mental retardation. We develop our social action agenda through our task forces and committees and in collaboration with other organizations with shared interests.
How can you get involved in policy activities?
- Join the Policy Committee
- Join an existing topical task force
- Organize a task force on a topic of interest
- Suggest ideas and assist in drafting policy statements
- Forward our policy emails to other list-servs
- Follow us on social media: Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram
We are committed to applying principles of social justice to policy development. To that end, we have worked with our partners to sponsor and participate in congressional briefings. Recent topics discussed include human trafficking prevention, the opioid epidemic, and strategies for facilitating evidence-based policy.
With input from our members and task forces, our policy committee develops positions on current topics related to behavioral health and social justice. The statements are approved by the full Board of Directors.
Our resolutions provide a concise overview of our stance on a particular policy concern, resources for more information on the topic, ways that our members can get involved in addressing the issue, and background research from the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry.
In some cases, we develop more in-depth statements on topics relevant to our task forces and current events.
Our position statements guide our policy and advocacy work. In recent years, our statements have emphasized immigration, group care of children and adolescents, family homelessness, schools, and juvenile shackling.
Letters of Support
Letters of support from Global Alliance have bolstered legislative, policy, and funding initiatives that apply principles of equity and social justice to a wide range of issues.