Suicide prevention and the need to bring mental health to the forefront of communities of color.

This is the link to the YouTube Live Streaming


Suicide prevention and the need to bring mental health to the forefront of communities of color.

@JudgeWren and @1of2vics

June 9th thumbnail

On Sunday, February 10, 2019. Judge Ginger Lerner-Wren joined the SPSMCHAT 2.0 Reboot! to discuss “Judges as Champions for Suicide Prevention.” Among the topics covered were:

  • A Problem-Solving court?
  • How does prejudicial judgement (stigma) impact the work of the courts?
  • What is Therapeutic Jurisprudence?
  • How do judges become #Champions4SuicidePrevention?
  • And Judge Wren’s vision for mental health & social justice in America?

Well, court is back in session! And we have Victor Armstrong in the house also.

As we build upon our prior chat about suicide prevention in US Jails & Prisons, tonight we will focus on recent data about alarming rise of deaths by suicide of black children and urgent need to address stigma and promote suicide prevention.

Judge Lerner-Wren will also discuss the short documentary film Faded Conversations, produced by United Way of Broward County in response to the data cited above.

Here is link

(Viewing 25:05).

Don’t miss this one!


Judge Wren

Judge Ginger Lerner-Wren, Broward County Court Judge

Seventeenth Judicial Circuit, State of Florida

 Judge Ginger Lerner-Wren earned her B.A. degree in Politics and Public Affairs, 1980, University of Miami and J.D. from Shepard Broad College of Law, Nova Southeastern University, 1983 and was elected Broward County Court Judge in 1997.  Judge Lerner-Wren pioneered the first problem solving Mental Health Court in the United States, dedicated to the decriminalization and community-based treatment of persons arrested with mental illness and co-occurring disorders and has diverted more than 21,000 people out of Broward’s jail.

Broward’s Mental Health Court is a national and global model.  Recognitions include:  Broward’s Court was the model for The America’s Law Enforcement & Mental Health Project signed into law by President Bill Clinton in November, 2000.  The Court was showcased at The White House, Conference on Mental Health.   In 2002, President George W. Bush appointed Judge Wren to serve on The President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health, where she chaired the criminal justice subcommittee.

In 2013, Judge Wren was selected Top Finalist, Innovating Justice Award, Hiil Foundation, The Hague, and The Netherlands and received National Council Advocacy and Excellence Award “Elected Official Service” in 2015.  She serves on the Board of Governors, United Way of Broward County Commission on Behavioral Health and Drug Prevention and the Executive Committee, National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention, Advisory Board, International Society Therapeutic Jurisprudence Advisory Board.

Judge Lerner-Wren speaks nationally and internationally on problem-solving justice and mental health courts.  She is an adjunct Professor at Nova Southeastern University and writes on diverse subjects (i.e. mental health, criminal justice, therapeutic jurisprudence, disability and human rights.)  Judge Lerner-Wren is the author of, “A Court of Refuge:  Stories from the Bench of America’s First Mental Health Court” published by Beacon Press in 2018.




Victor Armstrong serves as Vice President, Behavioral Health with Atrium Health based in Charlotte, NC. As such, he has responsibility for operational and strategic oversight of Atrium’s largest behavioral health campus, Behavioral Health Charlotte (“BHC”). The BHC campus contains 66 inpatient beds, a psychiatric emergency department, and 10 provider based outpatient behavioral health programs, including both adult and child medication management, outpatient therapy, a First Episode Psychosis Program, Adult and Child Partial Hospital Programs, an ACT Team, and a school based program which operates in 19 area schools.

Victor has dedicated his career to building and strengthening community resources to serve individuals living with mental illness. He is also a staunch advocate for reducing stigma around mental illness, and the accompanying discrimination against people living with mental illness. Victor speaks nationally and internationally on suicide awareness, particularly as it relates to underserved communities. He also utilizes social media as a platform to raise awareness of these issues.

Victor currently serves on the Board of Directors of the National Council for Behavioral Health (Secretary/Treasurer), RI International, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) NC, and i2i Center for Integrative Health. He is also former board chair of The National Association of Mental Illness (NAMI) NC and is a member of the American Association of Suicidology (AAS).

Victor’s awards and recognitions include 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award from East Carolina University School of Social Work, 2012 National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) NC, Mental Health Professional of the Year, Pride Magazine 2018,”Best of the Best”, and i2i Center for Integrative Health 2018 Innovation Award for “Whole Person Care”.

About spsmchat

Suicide Prevention Social Media: Weekly chats, expert guests. Sundays at 6pm PT/9pm ET. Live-streaming at Watch past shows on our blog. Hosted by Rudy Caseres. #SPSM
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