“While I was running back and forth to the hospital when Kristin was first admitted, no one offered me any kind of help. And the saddest part of this is that I had absolutely no expectation I would receive any help. Where is my casserole?”
Hence the title for our virtual event.
Regardless of the numerous campaigns and publicized initiatives, the stigma around Mental Health remains. The reluctance to view and treat mental health with the same focus and compassion as physical health is that two-tiered approach. A continued inability to talk openly and honestly about living with a diagnosis and caring for a friend or family member with a diagnosis continues.
Access to support and resources can also be compromised for both the patient and the caregiver. To continue to discuss, share, and learn the impact of Mental Health on our larger community, our loved ones, and our own lives, we are offering this complimentary event to anyone and everyone who can benefit from this conversation.
Our panel comprises community members who are either living with mental health issues or are caring for someone with a diagnosis—moderated by Michael Landsberg, an outspoken Mental Health warrior who will bring his own experience and insights to the discussion.
“When we talk openly, frankly, and honestly about mental health, we’re one step closer to healing.”
Michael Landsberg is a Canadian sports television personality, and one of the better-known personalities in Canadian broadcasting. Landsberg was with TSN since the network’s inception in 1984, where he started his national career as an anchor on TSN‘s SportsDesk, broadcasting more than 5,000 episodes. He also hosted TSN’s wildly popular 30-minute daily sports debate program Off the Record from 1997 to 2015, also one of Canada’s longest running talk shows.
Michael is also one of the country’s most staunch and vocal mental health advocates. After publicly talking about his own struggle with depression for decades, Landsberg founded #SickNotWeak: a non-profit that reframes mental illness as a health issue, rather than a character flaw. The organization serves as both a resource and community for people living with mental illness, and those who wish to support their loved ones. “I want people who suffer from depression to feel motivated to share and to get help. And I want people who don’t suffer, but who will be touched by depression, to look at this as an illness and not a weakness and to create an environment where more people can share and not feel like they are being judged” In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Landsberg has extended his efforts with #SickNotWeak to create Isolation Nation: a digital program dedicated to mitigating the dangerous effects of social isolation on mental health.
Kristin currently works in the child welfare sector as the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Lead at the Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies (OACAS). She brings over 15 years of experience in the areas of equity and anti-oppression in both the health and child welfare sectors.
Previously, Kristin designed the early implementation of a Children & Women’s hospital’s first Diversity, Equity and Inclusion program in Nova Scotia. She has also coordinated one of Canada’s first anti-Stigma programs for a multi-care mental health hospital and continues to speak wholeheartedly about her lived experience navigating the mental health system. Kristin has received care as both an inpatient and outpatient for Bipolar and PTSD diagnoses.
Kristin has earned graduated degrees in Adult Education & Community Development with a research focus on the resilience and brilliance of HIV/AIDS educators on the African continent and; in Social Work (University of Windsor) with a specific interest on systemic and structural oppression in public systems in Ontario. On a personal level, Kristin’s mental health is at its best when she is swimming large bodies of saltwater, regardless of the temperature.
Keishia Facey’s commitment to dismantle anti-Black racism meets at the intersections of social justice, Black joy, empowerment, and healing. Keishia is passionate about building community and relationships and is driven by her belief that equity deserving communities have the right to live their best lives free from oppression.
In 2020, Keishia joined the Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies (OACAS) as the program manager of One Vision One Voice (OVOV). OVOV is a program led by the Black community and funded by the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services with a focus on how multiple systems—particularly education, police, and healthcare—Interact to create and maintain racial disproportionality and disparities in child welfare for Black Canadians. As program manager, Keishia leads the development of implementable policies and strategies to address the anti-Black racism that is embedded within the child welfare sector.
In 2022, Keishia was listed as one of the 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women for her social, educational, and professional accomplishments.
Janet is a law clerk with Gluckstein Lawyers who brings over 25 years of experience specializing in personal injury, particularly medical negligence matters.
Janet is involved in all aspects of a medical negligence matter, from organizing, collating and analyzing medical records; preparing chronologies; locating, retaining and briefing the appropriate expert; coordinating evidence; interviewing witnesses; and preparing documents such as statements of claim, pre-trial memorandums and mediation memorandums; as well as assisting at trial. She is known for developing a rapport with clients by treating them with empathy and compassion.
In addition to her role at Gluckstein Lawyers, Janet is a caregiver and advocate for her daughter Kristin. Janet proudly stands beside Kristen throughout her journey with her mental health diagnosis.
She has learned over the past 9 years that there is most certainly a stigma to mental illness. Janet has seen how differently caregivers for someone with a physical illness are treated in comparison to a caregiver for someone with a mental illness.