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Press Release

Southern California Hispanic Mental Health Stakeholders and Spanish Language News Media Join Forces to Combat Misperceptions about Mental Health Problems

>PRWEB.COM Newswire

Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) June 07, 2012

Representatives from local Spanish language news media joined more than 50 Latino mental health stakeholders at Muestra Esto/Picture This—a forum produced by the Entertainment Industries Council, Inc. (EIC) in collaboration with Univisión 34 Los Angeles. The Forum was funded through the Mental Health Services Act (Proposition 63) to combat misperceptions about mental health problems and encourage help-seeking behavior by members of the Hispanic community.

“Muestra Esto/Picture This is an important collaboration between Spanish language media and the community to battle the misconceptions surrounding mental health problems,” said Darrell Steinberg, California State Senate President pro Tempore. “We can make great progress in promoting mental health and wellness in the Latino community. And, by doing so reduce stigma and discrimination suffered by those living with mental illness.”

“The energy and enthusiasm that all the community members and news media representatives brought to Muestra Esto/Picture This was amazing; it’s bound to increase news media attention and focus on local mental health issues in the Hispanic community,” said Marie Gallo Dyak, EIC executive vice president. “We are encouraged by the success of the forum and hope the Picture This format will serve as a model for efforts to increase mental health awareness among California’s diverse populations.”

“We were happy to partner with the EIC to host this open discussion among members of the community and local media about critical mental health challenges,” said Alberto Mier y Terán, Senior Vice President/General Manager for Univision 34 and TeleFutura 46. “It is crucial that we work together to create and strengthen community awareness of these challenges through the news media.”

“Muestra Esto/Picture This is a big step toward changing the Latino community’s attitudes about mental illness while, at the same time, increasing awareness and knowledge about positive mental health practices in partnership with the media,” said Marvin J. Southard, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health.

A select group of local news media representatives explained how they report on mental health issues. Gabriela Teissier, co-host of “Noticias 34: Primera Edición” on Univision 34, moderated the panel with Univision 34 news reporter Julio César Ortiz, Univision 34 news executive producer Mahelda Rodriguez, La Opinion public health writer Yurina Melara, and radio show host Kathleen Piche—who all offered insight into the editorial process.

The mental health stakeholders and experts in the Latino community then split into small groups to identify and prioritize key topics and messages concerning mental health issues with a focus on the misperceptions about people with mental health problems and overcoming hurdles to good mental health.

Community stakeholders came to consensus on top priorities and presented the news media representatives with story ideas and reporting suggestions. List top three priorities TK.

The forum represents just the beginning of a long learning process that will continue with help from EIC, which will produce and distribute a publication that features the core messages as well as terminology, community resources, and reporting suggestions that come from the forum.

Muestra Esto/Picture This is a component of a three-year program by EIC to create partnerships with entertainment and news media to reduce stigma and discrimination that prevents people with mental and emotional health problems from seeking the help they need.

The voter-approved Mental Health Services Act (Prop. 63) supported Muestra Esto/Picture This. It is one of several Prevention and Early Intervention Initiatives implemented by the California Mental Health Services Authority (CalMHSA), an organization of county governments working together to improve mental health outcomes for individuals, families and communities. CalMHSA operates services and education programs on a statewide, regional and local basis.

About Entertainment Industries Council
EIC, a non-profit organization, was founded in 1983 by leaders of the entertainment industry to bring the power and influence of the industry to bear on communication about health and social issues. The organization is considered to be the chief pioneer of entertainment outreach and one of the premiere success stories in the field of entertainment education. EIC provides information resources for entertainment creators through innovative and time-proven services and methods of "encouraging the art of making a difference" from within the entertainment industry. EIC produces the simulcast national television special PRISM Awards Showcase, which addresses accurate portrayals of prevention, treatment and recovery from drug, alcohol and tobacco use, and mental health concerns. The organization also produces the S.E.T Awards, honoring positive and non-stereotypical portrayals of science, engineering and technology.

About Univision Communications Inc.
Univision Communications Inc. (UCI) is the leading media company serving Hispanic America. Its assets include Univision Network, one of the top five networks in the U.S. regardless of language and the most-watched Spanish-language broadcast television network in the country reaching 96% of U.S. Hispanic households; TeleFutura Network, a general-interest Spanish-language broadcast television network reaching 88% of U.S. Hispanic households; Univision Cable Networks, including Galavisión, the country’s leading Spanish-language cable network, and a suite of six cable offerings - De Película, De Película Clásico, Bandamax, Ritmoson, Telehit and Clásico TV; Univision Studios, which produces and co-produces reality shows, dramatic series and other programming formats for the Company’s platforms; Univision Local Media, which owns and/or operates 62 television stations and 70 radio stations in major U.S. Hispanic markets and Puerto Rico; Univision Interactive Media, a network of national and local online and mobile sites including Univision.com, which continues to be the #1 most-visited Spanish-language website among U.S. online Hispanics, Univision Móvil, a longstanding industry-leader with unique, relevant mobile products and services, and Univision Partner Group, a specialized advertising and publisher network. Headquartered in New York City, UCI has television network operations in Miami and television and radio stations and sales offices in major cities throughout the United States. For more information, please visit http://www.univision.net.

The California Mental Health Services Authority (CalMHSA) is an organization of county governments working together to improve mental health outcomes for individuals, families and communities. CalMHSA administers programs funded by the Mental Health Services Act (Prop. 63) on a statewide, regional and local basis.

ADDITIONAL CONTACTS:    EIC, John Hinrichs, 818-840-2016
                                                CalMHSA, Mike Roth, 916-444-7280

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2012/6/prweb9586445.htm

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