Ronald Reagan picture

Proclamation 5379—Mental Illness Awareness Week, 1985

October 07, 1985

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

At some time in their lives, millions of Americans in all walks of life suffer from some form of mental illness. The cost of such illness to society is staggering, totaling billions of dollars for treatment, support, and lost productivity each year.

The emotional costs to those who suffer, and the anguish it causes their families and friends, are beyond reckoning. Because of the unwarranted stigma too often associated with mental illness—a by-product of fear and misunderstanding—many victims do not seek the help they need.

But help is available. Treatment can bring relief to many. Scientific advances in recent decades have led to a variety of effective treatments, using modern drugs as well as behavioral and psychosocial therapies: the lows of a depressive disorder can be ameliorated; suicide prevented; hallucinations and delusions dispelled; and crippling anxieties eased. Those who suffer can be healed and again become productive members of society.

In recognition of the unparalleled growth in scientific knowledge about mental illnesses and the need to increase awareness of such knowledge, the Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 67, has designated the week beginning October 6, 1985, as "Mental Illness Awareness Week" and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this event.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim. the week beginning October 6, 1985, as Mental Illness Awareness Week. I call upon all health care providers, educators, the media, public and private organizations, and the people of the United States to join me in this observance.

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

Signature of Ronald Reagan


Note: The proclamation was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on October 8.

Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5379—Mental Illness Awareness Week, 1985 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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