"Mental health issues, I believe, are the problems of our time right now… Yet, we’re still almost prehistoric in our attitudes toward these conditions. It’s up to media to step up and destigmatize and raise the conversation. For me, the number one issue is accuracy and being real."
-Dr. Drew Pinsky, Physician, Radio/Television Personality
TEAM Up is a project that brings together mental health experts, entertainment industry professionals and journalists whose purpose is to encourage deeper reporting and more accurate depictions of people living with mental illness. TEAM Up aims to provide support to those storytellers—including editors and reporters, actors and musicians, and writers in all media—in their efforts to report news and in stories that help their audiences better understand the world around us. This support comes in the form of resource materials, training and technical assistance to ensure that media tell engaging stories while minimizing stigma and discrimination.
The project is led by the Entertainment Industries Council, a nonprofit that since 1983 has worked with the entertainment industry and news media to encourage the art of making a difference on health and social issues. Project partners include Reingold, the Hispanic Communications Network and Chapman University, as well as the National Association of Broadcasters and the Radio Television Digital News Association. An advisory council comprised of leaders in mental health, journalism and entertainment helps to guide the project’s activities.
TEAM Up is supported by the California Mental Health Services Authority, an organization of county governments working to improve mental health among Californians. Prevention and early intervention programs implemented by CalMHSA are funded by counties through the voter-approved Mental Health Services Act (Prop. 63). Proposition 63 provides the funding and framework needed to expand mental health services to previously underserved populations and all of California’s diverse communities.
"It’s very important that the professionals help us. The media needs to understand what terms to use and when, which words hurt, which words give encouragement, which words we all need to use instead of others. Working in the media, we know that it’s very important. All that is needed now is the right information."
-Gabriela Teissier, Co-Anchor, Noticias 34: Primera Edición, Univision 34 Los Angeles