News Advisory - Vancouver hosts national mental health conference

CALGARY, Nov. 27 /CNW Telbec/ - Leading experts in the field of mental health are holding one of the largest conferences of its kind in Vancouver, November Sunday 29 - Tuesday December 1. The conference, titled 'Into the Light,' is being jointly organized by the Mental Health Commission of Canada, Vancouver Coastal Health and Simon Fraser University and will be looking at mental health issues across Canada.

There will be an opportunity to hear from the Honorable Michael Kirby, Chair of the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC), during a fire side chat with CBC Radio Host Shelagh Rogers on Sunday November 29, 7.00-9.00pm. Having faced her own challenges with depression, Ms. Rogers will be finding out what the Commission is doing to improve the lives of people living with a mental illness.

Mental health experts will be exploring a number of topics during the conference including stigma, mental health in the workplace and the links between mental health and substance abuse.

A framework document for a mental health strategy for Canada will be released at the conference and Howard Chodos, Director, Mental Health Strategy for Canada will be available to talk to the media about this important development. There will also be the opportunity to speak to Jayne Barker, Director, Mental Health Strategy about the recent launch of the Commission's At Home initiative and the work being done in Vancouver to tackle homelessness.

    Who:    Leading experts in the field of mental health

    Where:  The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, 900 West Georgia Street,
            Vancouver, BC V6C 2W6

    When:   Sunday November 29 - Tuesday December 1 2009

The Honourable Michael Kirby is widely recognized as Canada's champion for mental health. The Senate report "Out of the Shadows at Last," which he co-authored, captured the attention of the federal government and Prime Minister Stephen Harper. It resulted in Ottawa's first major commitment to address mental illness in our country and the creation of the MHCC. The Commission's objective is to enhance the health and social outcomes for Canadians living with mental health problems and illnesses.

SOURCE Mental Health Commission of Canada

For further information: For further information: and interview requests contact: Karleena Suppiah, Communications Specialist, (403) 385-4050

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