DBSA creates and promotes messages, structures, and practices that advance mental health, personal choice, and wellness. Building on a long history of championing personal advocacy, we also advocate with peers at the forefront of determining needs and best practices for mental health among people with depression and bipolar disorder. We support both policy and media related advocacy at national and state levels, ensuring the place, needs, and concerns of peers in policy, service delivery, and treatment decisions.

Youth Mental Health

DBSA believes all youth and families should have access to a robust crisis response system that has developmentally appropriate policies, staffing, and resources in place to respond to their needs equitably and effectively—the right supports, at the right time, delivered the right way.

Peer Support Services

DBSA works to improve the recognition of the value of peer support services throughout the delivery of healthcare to treat mental health conditions in both a traditional mental health delivery system or in an integrated or collaborative care setting that treats both physical and mental health;

Personal and Civil Rights: Privacy of Personal Health Information

DBSA advocates for the right of peers to choose their own paths to mental, emotional and physical wellness while promoting structures and practices that advance whole health and accessible care for everyone.

Personal and Civil Rights: Safe Gun Ownership

The second amendment to the Constitution states “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed." Discriminating against people because they have a mood disorder to exercise their second amendment rights is in conflict with DBSA Core Beliefs

Personal and Civil Rights: Right to Live in the Community

The significance of this U.S. Supreme Court ruling is that the states must assist people living with a mental health condition in obtaining access to community-based services, so long as the person does not object to living in the community, and the provision of services in the community would be a reasonable accommodation when balanced with other people living with mood disorders.

Stigma and Discrimination

DBSA views stigma and discrimination against people who live with mood disorders as one of the most serious challenges to address in our current society. Stigma exists when individuals or institutions project negative messages.