“Human Rights & Mental Health” is Focus of Dec. 10 Human Rights Day Community Conversation

Friday, November 22, 2019

The Virginia Beach Human Rights Commission (VBHRC), in partnership with the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), will host "Human Rights & Mental Health," the first in a series of Community Conversations, on Tuesday, Dec. 10, 6 to 8:30 p.m. at Virginia MOCA, 2200 Parks Ave. Dec. 10 is recognized annually across the world as Human Rights Day.

Janet Roach, WVEC 13News Now anchor, will preview her documentary project, "Finding Happiness," which follows one family's story of the challenges they faced while navigating the mental health care system.

A panel of experts who work in the mental health field will discuss their work to help protect the rights of individuals with mental health conditions. The panel includes:

  • MPO Andrea Bryk, Mental Health Mobile Crisis Team, Virginia Beach Police Department
  • Annette Miller, senior trial attorney, Virginia Beach Public Defender's Office
  • Natasha Sams, supportive residential services supervisor, Virginia Beach Department of Human Services, Behavioral Health Division
  • Courtney Boone, president, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Coastal Virginia

Representatives for a variety of local organizations will be on hand to share information on mental health resources for those seeking assistance.

On Dec. 10, 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirming fundamental freedoms and human rights for all people. This was the first global enunciation of human rights and one of the first major achievements of the United Nations. This year commemorates the 26th annual recognition of Human Rights Day by the VBHRC.

The VBHRC advocates for the human rights of city residents by providing educational programming, public forums and assistance to those whose rights may have been violated. The VBHRC will hold additional Community Conversations throughout 2020. For more information about the VBHRC or these events, call (757) 385-1158.

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