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Mental Health and Social Security Disability

Since 1949, the organization Mental Health America has sponsored Mental Health Awareness Month. The events surrounding this celebration are intended to promote understanding of the forms of mental illness and advocate for treatment and services that can help those living with a mental illness.

May is the official month for the Mental Health America celebration in 2014. However, numerous events sponsored by other organizations occur throughout the year sponsored. Some of these include:

  • National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (February-March)
  • National Brain Awareness Week (March)
  • World Bipolar Day (March)
  • National Alcohol Screening Day (April)
  • Alcohol Awareness Month (April)
  • National Children's Mental Health Week (May)
  • National Anxiety and Depression Awareness Week (May)
  • Older American's Mental Health Week (May)
  • Schizophrenia Awareness Week (May)
  • PTDD Awareness Month (June)
  • National Minority Mental Health Month (June)
  • Recovery Month (September)
  • National Suicide Prevention Week (September)
  • Mental Illness Awareness Week (October)
  • OCD Awareness Week (October)
  • ADHD Awareness Month (October)
  • International Survivors of Suicide Day (November)

Events such as these not only raise awareness about mental illness, but also provide a platform for advocates who lobby for treatment, funding and for elimination of the stigma associated with mental illness.

Many mental illnesses leave people unable to work. If this happens to you or to a loved one, it is important to find out the options that exist to help. One of these options may be Social Security Disability (SSD), a benefit program run by the Social Security Administration (SSA) that provides payments to those who paid FICA taxes while employed.

Another benefit program that can help those unable to work because of mental illness is Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This program, administered by the SSA, provides benefits to those whose financial situation meets certain thresholds and who cannot work because of disability.

Qualifying for disability benefits - either SSD or SSi - can be complex and navigating the Social Security bureaucracy can be very frustrating. It is important for people with mental disabilities to seek out professional assistance when applying for benefits or appealing decisions, as they can be especially vulnerable when confronted by the roadblocks thrown up by the SSA. If you or a loved one suffers from a mental illness and are seeking SSD benefit, do what many others have done. Contact Binder & Binder®, America's most successful Social Security Disability advocates. Call from anywhere in the United States to learn how they can help you.

Source: National Alliance on Mental Illness website. http://www.nami.org/

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