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Latest News about the Opal Network

Info about Opal Network in Lane County, Oregon: A quarterly meeting to support the voice and empowerment of mental health consumers and psychiatric survivors.


Opal Network in Lane County:

Latest - You can watch a video of the May 12, 2012 fifth anniversary meeting of Opal Network in Eugene, Oregon, bringing together about a dozen mental health groups:

Background about Opal Network: 

Opal Whiteley is remembered in this mural in downtown Cottage Grove. The Opal Network began in Spring 2007 as a way to gather everyone quarterly in Lane County, Oregon, who supports the voice and empowerment of mental health consumers and psychiatric survivors.

Since then, quarterly, there's been a public meeting at the Eugene Public Library on a variety of topics and panels, all with free refreshments, networking and news.

Below you will find a link to more info about recent and upcoming Opal Network meetings, as well as a "folder of folders" with information about Opal Network, its background, etc.

If you do one thing....

.... stay in touch with Opal Network, and sign up for free occasional announcements about the quarterly meetings and other important events, here: 

Opal Network Announcement Email list


More info on the Opal model: 

The cross-disability group LILA, a Center for Independent Living, has especially been helpful. MindFreedom Lane County and a number of other organizations have supported this important coalition.

Opal Network now offers a workshop nationally on this model: Uniting the cross-disability and mental health consumer/psychiatric survivor communities to mobilize allies for real change in the mental health system. For more info on these "Amplify" workshops, click here.

And who was Opal? Opal Whiteley was a famous author in Lane County, Oregon, who ended up in a psychiatric institution.


For more background information about the Opal Network itself -- including history, posters, fliers, the story of Opal Whiteley herself and more -- go this folder:


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Samantha Johnson, psychiatric survivor, MFI intern

Samantha Johnson is a 22-year-old psychiatric survivor who is interning at the MindFreedom International office. "I was absolutely in disbelief at how the people were treated at the hospital. It was an environment of emotional abuse interspersed with 'treatments' and 'policies' that could be more accurately described as assault. The tragic thing is that there really are some good people working there, but they are unable to provide people with the help they need inside a system that prioritizes profits over people. It might take five years of counseling for someone to truly recover from a mental health crisis, but it takes five minutes to tranquilize them. This is why I started working with MindFreedom. For 25 years MFI has been challenging the mental health system to see us as human beings- to treat us as human beings- through peaceful activism. At MFI we emphasize individual choice, empowerment, and compassion as necessary aspects of a true healing process."
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