GMH Human Rights and Policy Institute | Teachers College Columbia University

Skip to content Skip to main navigation

GMH Human Rights and Policy Institute

January 9 - 14, 2023

January 9, 2023 - January 14, 2023

Hosted by: The Global Mental Health Lab

Times: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM EST each day

Location:  Online Format with Synchronous Teaching

Our team will support you to participate each day using Zoom audio/video technology, interactive whiteboards and chat features to ensure real-time discussion, Q&A and active participation. You will only need a stable internet connection to participate.

Overview:
The Human Rights and Policy Institute in Global Mental Health (GMH) is a 6-day training program aimed at providing opportunities to faculty, students, advisors, policymakers, and I/NGO staff to (1) conceptualize global mental health and disability from a human rights lens and catalyze a systemic paradigm shift from a medical to a social/rights model; (2) advocate for the rights of persons with disabilities and mental health disorders through international conventions, national laws and legislation frameworks, policies and programs that can impact on the level of individuals, organizations and systems; (3) apply steps in the design, development, implementation, and evaluation of rights-based mental health and disability policy and programs; (4) mainstream disability and mental health into public policy, organizations, programs and projects in national/city strategies; and (5) integrate disability and mental health into the global health and development agendas, emergency and humanitarian response.

Faculty:

  • Sandra Willis, Ph.D.
  • Helen (Lena) Verdeli, Ph.D., M.Sc.

Guest speakers:

  • Rabih El Chammay, M.D., M.Sc.
  • Victor Pineda, Ph.D.

More information on the faculty and course objectives is located below.

Registration Fee: $1,000.00

Discounts: (Please contact cps@tc.columbia.edu for more info)

  • 25% discount will specifically be offered to all students (Teachers College/Columbia University and non-Teachers College/Columbia University)
  • 25% discount will specifically be offered to all Teachers College/Columbia University alum
  • 25% discount will be offered on the registration cost to groups of 3 or more participating from the same institution.
  • 50% discount will be offered to participants from Low- and Middle-Income Countries. To see if you qualify, click here.

Discounts cannot be combined and registrants will receive the best discounted price.

Academic Credit:
TC Students can now register for credit, for more information please contact gmh.institute@tc.columbia.edu

Global Mental Health Lab:
For more information about the TC Global Mental Health Lab, directed by Dr. Lena Verdeli, check out our website: www.tc.columbia.edu/gmhlab


Overview

There is an imperative for a new ecology of global mental health and disability that positions the individual and society as inextricably linked within a human rights framework. This new approach espouses mental health and disability not merely on the grounds of impairment and pathology based on the biology, physiology and psychology of the individual, but also about the environments in which they function and interact, and the systems with which they intersect. Thus, a new conceptual, methodological, programmatic, policy and legislative rights-based framework is required to

  1. transform systems to adopt more equitable, accessible and inclusive laws, policies and programs by assessing, adopting and improving respect for human rights and dignities;
  2. identify and remove systemic, attitudinal and environmental barriers and mainstream disability and mental health at all levels of the health, education, employment, social, legal and protective systems and services;
  3. position biopsychosocial factors as major health and social determinants for the onset, expression, course, and outcome of disability and mental health disorders.
Global Mental Health - Human Rights and Policy Diagram

This institute aims to integrate knowledge across disciplines and practices that adopt a rights/social model of mental health and disability, advocating and promoting diversity, equity, non-discrimination and inclusion. The institute will explore conceptual, theoretical and practical transformational policy and programmatic interventions to develop Systems of Care with evolving applications of the human rights frameworks to evidence-based practice and practice-based evidence in disability and mental health.

The institute will provide opportunities to faculty, students, advisors, policymakers, and I/NGO staff to (1) conceptualize global mental health and disability from a human rights lens and catalyze a systemic paradigm shift from a medical to a social/rights model; (2) advocate for the rights of persons with disabilities and mental health disorders through international conventions, national laws and legislation frameworks, policies and programs that can impact on the level of individuals, organizations and systems; (3) apply steps in the design, development, implementation, and evaluation of rights-based mental health and disability policy and programs; (3) mainstream disability and mental health into public policy, organizations, programs and projects in national/city strategies; and (4) integrate disability and mental health into the global health and development agendas, emergency and humanitarian response.

Learning Objectives

The workshop aims to help the participant:

  • Become well versed in the framing of human diversity, including neurodiversity, equity and inclusion of persons with disabilities and mental health disorders
  • Become an advocate and raise awareness on the rights of persons with disabilities to combat stigma, discrimination, ableism and the perpetual marginalization of persons with disabilities and mental health disorders.
  • Explore, establish and refine the position of human rights frameworks, disability and mental health in Global Health priorities, discourse, instruments and agenda setting
  • Integrate the key areas of mental health, disability, health and human rights to promote an integrated, person-centered, and holistic system of care to promote the rights and inclusion of persons with disabilities and mental health disorders
  • Adopt a Twin-Track approach and determine means to transform systems, services and communities (health, education and social care) by (1) mainstreaming disability rights, accessibility and inclusion, (2) identifying and breaking down systemic attitudinal, environmental and institutional barriers, and (3) adopting more person-centered, recovery-oriented and human rights-based approach, all in line with the CRPD
  • Become oriented towards disability and mental health treaties, conventions, and global policies and laws that promote human rights along with the instruments and mechanisms to assess and improve the human rights conditions and inclusion of persons with disabilities and mental health disorders.
  • Develop an Action Plan in mainstreaming disability and mental health in emergency and humanitarian contexts

Faculty

Sandra Willis Headshot

Sandra Willis, Ph.D.
Director of Policy & Advocacy
Global Mental Health Lab, Teachers College, Columbia University
Director for Learning & Knowledge Development World Enabled, Berkeley, California

Dr. Willis is a psychologist by profession with 20 years of experience in academic, government and non- government organizations engaging in teaching, mentoring, research, social policy and social development activities leading to leadership roles that emphasize turnaround social development strategies. Dr. Willis received her doctorate in Psychology with a specialization in intellectual & developmental disabilities and has worked in academia as an Assistant Professor at the California State University in Fullerton, Michigan State University Dubai and the Founder and Head of the Psychology Program in Zayed University. For the past 12 years, Dr. Willis was responsible for providing strategic advice on integrated social, health, and economic development in Dubai via policy, legislative and programmatic recommendations, including a Dubai-wide master plan for service delivery, human resources, partnership development and capital investment. The adopted approach included applied research tools, rigorous analysis, monitoring and evaluation, to ensure that all strategies and policies are contextually appropriate, fiscally responsible, are evidence-based. She developed macro-level social development strategies to drive policy development and impact assessment that include the Dubai Disability, Mental Health, Early Childhood Development and Parenting Strategies.

Lena Verdeli, Ph.D., M.Sc.,
Associate Professor in Clinical Psychology,
Director of the Global Mental Health Lab,
Teachers College, Columbia University

Lena Verdeli has been teaching graduate psychology students, psychiatry residents and fellows on research and practice of empirically-supported treatments at Teachers College, Columbia University. Dr. Verdeli’s research focuses on prevention and treatment of mood disorders in adolescents and adults and has received numerous federal and foundation grants for her work. She played a key role in the adaptation, training, and evaluation of psychotherapy protocols used by non-specialists in low-resource areas and has collaborated with academic and humanitarian groups in the US and abroad in treatment studies with depressed adults in southern Uganda and war-affected adolescents in IDP camps in northern Uganda; distressed primary care patients in Goa, India; depressed and anxious persons in Haiti; and traumatized internally displaced women in Bogota, Colombia. She has served as a Technical Advisor for the WHO, Division of Mental Health and Substance Use; Chair of the Research Working group for the Family Committee at the UN; Advisory Board member of the American Foundation for Suicide Research and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance; and Member of the Mental Health Advisory Board of the Millennium Villages Project of the Earth Institute.

Guest Speakers

Rabih El Chammay

Rabih El Chammay, M.D., M.Sc.
Head of the National Mental Health Programme,
Ministry of Public Health in Lebanon

Dr. Rabih El Chammay is a psychiatrist and currently the head of the National Mental Health Programme at the Ministry of Public Health in Lebanon. After founding the program, he led the development of the first National Mental Health and Substance Use Strategy 2015-2020 aiming at reforming the Mental Health System in Lebanon towards community-based mental health services in line with Human rights and latest evidence that is currently under implementation. He is a member of the Department of Psychiatry at the faculty of Medicine at Saint Joseph University in Beirut. He has been working in Public mental health, Refugee mental health and health system strengthening for more than 10 years. He has been working on these topics in the MENA region as well as on the international level with various agencies such as WHO, UNHCR, UNICEF, IMC and many other NGOs.

Victor Santiago Pineda

Victor Santiago Pineda, Ph.D.
President & Founder,
World ENABLED

Dr. Victor Santiago Pineda is President and CEO of Pineda Foundation. He is a leading global expert on disability rights, policy, planning, and design. He serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of California at Berkeley, a Lecturer in the Comparative Disability Policy Program at American University’s School for International Service, and a Research Fellow at the World Institute on Disability. He has worked closely with the U.S. Department of the Treasury, World Bank, United Nations, UNESCO, UNICEF, and cabinet-level officials in the UAE, Qatar, Venezuela, and Serbia among others to develop policies and programs that include persons with disabilities as equal stakeholders in development. Dr. Pineda is the recipient of a National Science Foundation (NSF) innovative research grant, a Fulbright-Hays Fellowship, the Thomas Jefferson Award, the Tom Clausen Fellowship for Business and Policy, and the AAPD Paul G. Hearne Leadership Award. Victor Santiago Pineda holds He holds a Ph.D. from the Luskin School for Public Affairs at the University of California at Los Angeles, and a Master’s in City and Regional Planning, a BA in Political Economy, and a BS in Business Administration from the University of California at Berkeley.

Other Offerings

Digital Learning for the K-8 Classroom
Ongoing Enrollment May 1, 2017 - May 1, 2017

Child Abuse Identification & Reporting
January 29, 2023 - May 6, 2023

School Violence Prevention & Intervention
January 29, 2023 - May 6, 2023

Dignity for All Students Act (DASA)
February 4, 2023 - May 13, 2023

New Research and Applications for Teaching Reading Workshop
July 10 - 30, 2023 July 10, 2023 - July 30, 2023

View the Complete List