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Proclamation 5051—National Mental Health Week, 1983

April 15, 1983

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Mental illness costs this Nation more than $50 billion a year and contributes to declining productivity and rising health costs. Approximately 35 million people a year suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder. In addition, millions more seek professional assistance to alleviate the physical and emotional problems created by excessive stress.

These facts and figures, however, cannot describe the high cost in human suffering from mental illness. Incapacitation—most often temporary but permanent for some-may result from severe depression, crippling anxieties, or other manifestations of mental disorders. Yet public fear and misunderstanding of their illnesses place additional burdens on the afflicted and their families.

It is important that the public understand that major advancements brought about by science have made mental illnesses and stress-related disorders greatly amenable to treatment. New technologies have added significantly to the numbers of patients who have improved or recovered following treatment and promise further advances.

In recognition of the importance for our Nation of the treatment, care and support for the mentally ill provided by health professionals, volunteers, and family members, the Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 52, has authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation designating the week of April 10 through April 16, 1983, as National Mental Health Week.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate the week beginning on April 10, 1983, as National Mental Health Week. I call upon health professionals, educators, communications media, the business community, individuals, and public and private organizations concerned with the welfare of their fellow citizens to seek and encourage better understanding of mental disorders and to honor those whose studies, treatment, and support have brought palpable gains and welcome hope to the mentally ill.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of April, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventh.

Signature of Ronald Reagan


Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5051—National Mental Health Week, 1983 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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