CMHA, Ontario proudly announces establishment of new Ontario Consumer and Family Advisory Council

    TORONTO, June 26 /CNW/ - CMHA, Ontario has established the Ontario
Consumer and Family Advisory Council (OCFAC). The purpose of the council is to
advise the CMHA, Ontario Board of Directors from the perspective of mental
health consumers and family members in order to assist the organization in
carrying out its mission. This is the first council of its kind for CMHA,
    "We are pleased that the OCFAC has been established. As consumers,
families and caregivers that live with mental illness each day we are able to
provide a unique perspective into mental health services and the supports
required," says Joanne Purdon, Chair, OCFAC. "We look forward to working with
CMHA, Ontario."
    Eight council members were chosen from across Ontario and attended their
first council meeting on Saturday, June 9, 2007. The council is composed of
five consumers and three family members: Joanne Purdon of Toronto (Chair);
Laurie Albertini of Perth; Isabelle Sirois of Ottawa; Joan Peacock of
Lakefield; Donald Schultz of Ottawa; Susan Howard Carmichael of Braeside; Bill
Hopkins of Sarnia; and Jean Beckett of Parry Sound.
    "CMHA is committed to ensuring that consumers and family members are an
integral part of CMHA, Ontario. The establishment of the OCFAC is but one way
to do this, and will play a key role in organizational planning, leadership
and governance for CMHA, Ontario Division. We thank the founding members for
bringing this to fruition, and we welcome the representative to our Board of
Directors," says Judith Watson, former President, Board of Directors, CMHA,
    "This is exciting news for CMHA, Ontario," says Russel DeCou, President,
Board of Directors, CMHA, Ontario. "I look forward to working with and
alongside the Ontario Consumer and Family Advisory Council (OCFAC). We believe
that the formation of this new council will help CMHA, Ontario to focus more
attention on this core part of our mission."
    The members bring with them a wealth of relevant skills and life
experience. The Chair, Joanne Purdon, is a litigation law clerk with
experience in the areas of personal injury, insurance defence and disability.
She also brings personal experience in mental health issues as the primary
caregiver for her nephew, who lives with schizophrenia.

    (*) For further information on the council, see

    About CMHA, Ontario

    The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), Ontario is a non-profit
provincial association committed to improving services and supports for people
with mental illness and their families, and to promotion of mental health in
Ontario. With 32 branches that provide community mental health services
throughout the province, CMHA, Ontario achieves its mission through public
education, knowledge transfer, analysis of public issues and advocacy for
healthy public policy and an effective and efficient health system.

For further information:

For further information: Kismet Baun, Communications Officer, CMHA,
Ontario, Toronto, (416) 977-5580, ext. 4141,

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Canadian Mental Health Association, Ontario Division

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