The Coalition of Behavioral Health Agencies, Inc. Coalition Briefs
An Evolving Update on Behavioral Health in New York

The Coalition's Annual Conference is Upon Us - March 30, 2017

With only a few weeks to go, The Coalition is putting the final polish on our upcoming Annual Conference on March 30th, titled “Turning Challenges Into Opportunities”. Between our distinguished keynote speaker and the three panels that follow, the conference promises to be an informative and networking experience that no provider will want to miss.

  • Keynote: Looking Through the Federal Lens (Albeit Foggy!)
    Rebecca Farley, Vice President, Policy & Advocacy, National Council for Behavioral Health

  • Understanding Value in Integrated Behavioral Health
    Facilitator: Kristin Woodlock, CEO, Woodlock & Associates, LLC

  • The New Partnership Paradigm in Integrated Behavioral Health
    Facilitator: Bruce Feig, Senior Consultant, Sachs Policy Group

  • Use of Data, Information and Technology for Informed Decision Making
    Facilitator: John Kastan, Chief Program Officer, The Jewish Board

To register, please click here.

To view the full agenda, please click here.

The event will take place on March 30, 2017, from 8:30am - 4:30pm, at Congregation Rodeph Sholom at 7 W 83rd Street, New York, NY 10024.



The Coalition Visits Albany for Budget Advocacy Days

ADVOCACY DAY 2017 On February 6th and February 7th, a group of 15 Coalition members, accompanied by Coalition leadership, called on Senate, Assembly and executive leaders to present our FY2018 Budget Priorities: Preserve and Strengthen Community Based Mental Health And Substance Use Programs. Our “one pager” breaks down our budget requests into three important areas identified by the Board of Directors: Infrastructure and Capacity, Ensure Access to Services and Housing That Promotes Healthy Individuals and Communities, and Workforce. If you have questions about any of the issues, please contact Doug Berman, Vice President for Policy at, and we will be pleased to discuss them with you.

Our advocates formed into groups of 4 or 5 to accommodate a busy schedule. In two days, our advocates met with 25 elected and agency officials, including the Executive Chamber. We held advocacy meetings with the Chairs of the pertinent committees in the Senate and Assembly, as well as the politically important Independent Democratic Conference.

Several of our asks were well received, especially the recommendation to set aside $125 million or 25% of the funds in the Statewide Health Care Facility Transformation Program (25% of $500 million) be targeted to community based organizations, which received strong support in the Assembly. There was a lot of support for calling on PPSs to distribute DSRIP funds to community-based providers,
supportive and supported housing
, and an increase in funding to combat the Opioid and Heroin epidemic. While there was general support for Workforce initiatives, we had to carefully explain why our request for an additional $50.5 million to support minimum wage increases is necessary.

The budget will not be complete until the Assembly and the Senate reach agreement with Governor Cuomo, which has to occur on or before April 1, 2017. Until then, The Coalition will continue working with legislators to ensure our priorities are included.

Executive Budget Hearing on Mental Hygiene: While we were in Albany, Christy Parque, President and CEO of The Coalition testified at the FY2018 Executive Budget Hearing on Mental Hygiene. Her testimony can be seen here, and the entire hearing here.


Coalition President & CEO Christy Parque Quoted in Crain's on Lack of DSRIP Funding for CBO's

Coalition President & CEO, Christy Parque was quoted in Crain’s Health Pulse on February 1, 2017, in an article titled “Non-hospital groups decry insufficient DSRIP funding.” In general, the DSRIP Performing Provider Systems (PPS) have been widely criticized about the deficiency of funds flowing to community based providers, which The Coalition emphasized during our Albany Advocacy Days and our midpoint assessment comments. Ms. Parque stated that “Without the PPS leads committing resources to outreach community-based organizations… those community-based organizations best positioned to engage the neediest communities will not be there.” The article further describes the concerns of other health care providers who expressed their frustration with the distribution of funds.


The Coalition Welcomes New Program Associate Marlo Pasion

The Coalition’s Center for Rehabilitation & Recovery is excited to welcome Marlo (Maria Lourdes) Pasion as the newest member of our team! Marlo will be working closely with The Center’s efforts to support person-centered and recovery-oriented care to HCBS, PROS, Rehabilitation, and other community based behavioral health providers.

Marlo is a graduate of University of California, Santa Cruz, and New York University’s Silver School of Social Work. Marlo has been engaged in direct practice for ten years, which includes her previous work in California as a youth counselor at Aspiranet’s Family-focused Support Network, Bill Wilson Center’s Runaway & Homeless Youth Shelter, and St. Andrew’s Residential Programs for Youth. In New York, Marlo has previously been a part of Jewish Association for Services for the Aged’s Project Open and Pet & Elder Team Support, Metropolitan Hospital’s Assertive Community Treatment program, and Safe Horizon at the Queen’s Family Justice Center. Most recently, Marlo has served as program director at The Mental Health Association’s Harlem Bay Network PROS program, following her tenure as team leader and intake coordinator. Her passion for learning, research, and collaboration is a guiding force to her prospective work with various PROS and HCBS programs in enhancing recovery-oriented, strengths-based services.


Primary Care Development Corporation (PCDC) Launches New $19.5M Loan Fund

By: Lori Glass
Director, Capital Investment
Primary Care Development Corporation

In February 2017, the Primary Care Development Corporation (PCDC) rolled out the new, $19.5 million Community Health Care Revolving Capital Fund in New York State.  Through this public-private partnership with the state, PCDC will provide affordable loans to Article 28 health centers, Article 31 mental health centers, and Article 32 substance abuse treatment centers in New York State to finance the construction, expansion, and renovation of community health care facilities. 

PCDC is especially excited that this fund will promote integrated health care.   As part of its efforts, PCDC has reached out to the New York State Office of Mental Health to encourage strong participation from community-based mental health providers. Loan proceeds may be used to pay for expansion-related expenses on facility projects, including predevelopment, acquisition, and construction. 

PCDC leverages its 20+ years’ experience to help community health centers enhance their services as part of its mission to catalyze excellence in primary care. Since inception, PCDC has financed 130 primary care projects valued at more than $850 million in communities with the greatest health and economic needs. Our lenders work with facility operators; to provide critical financing and technical assistance from the initial planning stages through project completion. These projects result in new jobs and increased primary care access for thousands of patients in underserved communities. 

About the Fund: This fund was established in the New York State 2015-16 Enacted Budget under the authority of the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) and Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) to improve access to affordable capital to expand and improve preventive or primary care capacity. 

Behavioral health providers are encouraged to apply. For more information about PCDC Capital Investment financial services in New York State, please visit


The Coalition Invites Members to Submit Briefs Articles & Water Cooler Items

As a major source of communication to Coalition members, elected and government officials, as well as the greater behavioral health community, Briefs offers a great opportunity to get your message out.

We welcome submissions from our members that highlight such topics as innovative services they are providing, policy positions they support, experiences implementing new systems and practices, etc.

Please submit your proposed articles to We look forward to receiving your input!



NYC HCBS/CMA Networking Event

City and State partners in collaboration with The Coalition for Behavioral Health are holding a series of networking opportunities for New York City adult behavioral health Home and Community Based Service (HCBS) providers both active and on hiatus, Care Management Agencies (CMAs), lead Health Homes and Managed Care Organizations (MCOs). The event creates opportunities to enhance referrals to HCBS providers, learn about the variety of services available and meet with representatives from all the stakeholders in HCBS and Health Home Care Management. We strongly encourage Care Management Agencies to send their Adult Health Home Care Coordinators for part of the day!

The next event will take place on March 16th from 10am to 4pm at the NYC DOHMH Headquarters in Long Island City.

For more information and registration please click here.


Coalition Member-Only Events

We encourage all members to participate in sharing information and working with us.

Compliance Committee
Date: Monday, March 13, 2017
Time: 2:00pm – 4:00pm
Location: 123 William Street, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10038
For more information please contact Teyana Reed at

Substance Use Committee Meeting
Date: Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Time: 3:00pm – 5:00pm
Location: 123 William Street, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10038
For more information please contact Cheryl Bobe at  


The Center for Rehabilitation & Recovery

Improving Recovery and Outcomes
Thursday, March 16, 2017
Time: 9:00am – 5:00pm
Location: 123 William Street, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10038
More info »
Register now »

Comprehensive Benefits Management Training
**This is a three-day training; participants must be able to commit to attending all sessions.
Tuesday - Thursday, March 21-23, 2017
Time: 9:00am – 5:00pm
Location: 123 William Street, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10038
More info »
Register now »

The  Professional Learning Center

Advanced Workshop in Motivational Interviewing for Supervisors
Friday, March 17, 2017
Time: 9:00am – 4:30pm
Location: 123 William Street, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10038
More info »
Register now »

Court-Involved Youth Initiative

Enhancing Resiliency in Youth from Troubled Families
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Time: 9:30am – 12:30pm
Location: 123 William Street, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10038
More info »
Register now »          


Other Noteworthy Events

Occasionally The Coalition will announce other noteworthy events for our community

Improve Behavioral Health Business Practices
(Online BHbusiness Courses)
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) offers 12 self-paced, online business courses at no cost to behavioral health providers and organizations. BHbusiness courses are designed to help you improve your business opportunities and thrive in the changing health care marketplace.
To register please
click here

Odyssey House Family Center of Excellence Networking Event
Wednesday, March 29th, 2017
Time: 10:00am – 12:00pm
For more information please click here

MCTAC to Hold Behavioral Health Value Based Payment Feedback Sessions on NYS BH Investment Program

New York State is planning to invest significantly in behavioral health providers to get ready for the transition to Value Based Payments. This event will serve as an opportunity to provide feedback to NYS OMH and OASAS staff regarding the investment program. MCTAC and state partners will provide an overview of the NYS VBP initiative in this session. 

The sessions will be held on the following dates:

March 24th: Rochester, 1-4 PM
Memorial Art Gallery
500 University Avenue, Rochester NY 14607
Register here>>

March 27th: Long Island, 1-4 PM
Melville Marriott
1350 Walt Whitman Road, Melville NY 11747
Register here>>

March 28th: NYC, 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Eisner & Lubin Auditorium
NYU Kimmel Center, 4th Floor
60 Washington Square South, New York NY 10012
Register here>>

April 12th: Albany, 1-4 PM
Radisson Hotel Albany 
205 Wolf Road, Albany NY 12205
Register here>>


water cooler
Around the Water Cooler

On February 8, 2017, Services for the Underserved (SUS) was awarded $735,000 by The Dormitory Authority State of New York (DASNY) to improve accessibility across their residential programs. The assets will allow the agency to improve the mobility and quality of life for consumers with physical disabilities and impairments. 


In a recent press release, Unique People Services (UPS) introduced Diane Louard-Michel as its new Senior Director of Real Estate and Development. With nearly thirty years of experience, Ms. Louard-Michel will be responsible for developing and managing UPS’ supportive housing projects. Additionally, she will oversee the agency’s Property Management functions, prepare and maintain preliminary budgets, and hire architects, contractors, consultants, etc. The Coalition would like to congratulate Ms. Louard-Michel on her new role and looks forward to working with her.





Community Access has launched ThriveAtWork, a new peer training program. Community Access has been at the forefront of peer workforce development for more than 30 years, with Howie the Harp Advocacy Center recognized nationally as the gold standard in job training for people with mental health concerns. Building on these strong foundations, and in collaboration with Services for the Underserved (SUS), ThriveAtWork is a free training program that will support hundreds of peers to get jobs within Human Services. This training is a key component of ThriveNYC, the City’s comprehensive mental health plan launched by the Mayor’s Office and supported by the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. ThriveAtWork welcomes participants with a broad range of personal and professional backgrounds. Trainings are free, have flexible schedules, and are tailored to meet the varied backgrounds of applicants. Click here for more information.


On January 31, 2017, The Bridge and Weston United launched their first joint client art show named “Community” at Gallery M. The show highlighted artwork from clients in The Bridge’s outpatient substance abuse program and Weston United’s shelter for those with mental health disorders.


Recently, New York City’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene announced that they will be looking for Community Based Organizations to partner with on a Mural Arts Project. The purpose of the project is to use mural art as a form of communication for raising awareness and reducing the negative views associated with those who suffer from mental health disorders. The deadline for submission is April 17, 2017, at 11:59pm.

To read more about the project and view the application please click here

To find out more information, please visit


During the month of January, The Osborne Association celebrated National Mentoring Month. The agency engaged in a number of social activities with a young audience in determination to improve their academic, social, and economic opportunities. Some activities include staff members and mentees traveling to Washington D.C. to participate in this year’s “We Shall Not Be Moved” march and sharing mentor success stories on social media. Even though National Mentoring Month has come to an end, The Osborne Association continues to evaluate how mentoring can support an individual’s personal and professional development.


On January 27, 2017 the National Association of Social Workers appointed Juli Kempner, as its new Executive Director. With her experience as a social worker, attorney, and nonprofit administrator, Ms. Kempner served as the Director of Social Work for the Legal Aid Society, the Director of East Village Access, the Director of Legal and Advocacy Services for Disability Rights Florida, Inc., and as a Health Services Manager for Pinellas County (FL). Ms. Kempner has much to contribute to the National Association of Social Workers and The Coalition wishes her the best in her new role.


On March 6, 2017, the Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York announced the launch of the 2017 New York Community Trust Nonprofit Excellence Awards. The award provides area nonprofits with an opportunity to examine their management practices and receive expert feedback to strengthen their ability to meet their mission. Applications are due on April 21, 2017 ay 5:00pm.

For more information please click here


On February 22, 2017, Community Access held a groundbreaking ceremony for their 126-unit building which will provide 57 affordable two-bedroom apartments, 8 affordable studio apartments, and 60 studio apartments for tenants referred by the New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH). The location will offer on-site social services by Community Access staff and support from OMH funding. In addition, on February 28, 2017, Steve Coe, CEO of Community Access was featured in the New York Nonprofit Media for speaking about the Crisis Intervention Team model at a press conference back in November 2016.  


Stephen Russo, Executive Director of Goddard Riverside Community Centerannounced that he will be stepping downfromhis position at the end of theyear.Dr. Roderick Jones, formerly the President and CEO of Grace Hill Settlement House will be taking his place.Mr. Russo has contributed majority of his career to the agency and used his knowledge and experiences to expand the programs offered to vulnerable children, youth, and adults.In 2016, Mr. Russo was honored as one of the founders of the supportive housing movement at the Network’s awards Gala.The Coalition admires Mr. Russo for his many accomplishments and contributions. We wish him the best in his new journey and we welcome Dr. Jones to our community.


On February 23, 2017, Danika Mills, Executive Director of Coordinated Behavioral Care, Inc. was honored at the CSR Awards for promoting a health workplace and culture of wellness. The event included a 30-minute “Thought Leadership” discussion panel that focused on innovative Corporate Social Responsibility practices within the healthcare world. The Coalition would like to congratulate Ms. Mills on her award.


In proofreading our last issue of Coalition Briefs we missed acknowledging that Services for the Underserved (SUS) was selected to participate in a two-year Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC), which was inadvertently left out of our last edition of Briefs. The expectation of this demonstration is for agencies to incorporate behavioral health with physical health care; increase consistent uses of evidence-based practices, and improve access to high quality care for people with mental health and substance use disorders.  


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