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President's New Freedom
Commission on Mental Health


Frequently Asked Questions

Q.  When was the Presidentís New Freedom Commission on Mental Health established?

A.  President George W. Bush established the Commission by presidential Executive Order 13263 on April 29, 2002.  Link to Executive Order.  This President's Commission was the first comprehensive study of the nation's public and private mental health service delivery systems in nearly 25 years. 

Q.  What was the mission and goal of the Presidentís New Freedom Commission on Mental Health?

A.  The Commissionís mission was to study the United States mental health service delivery system, including both private and public sector providers.  The Commission advised the President on methods to improve the system.  The Commissionís goal was to recommend improvements that will enable adults with a serious mental illness and children with a serious emotional disturbance to live, work, learn, and participate fully in their communities.  Link to Executive Order.

Q. Were the meetings of the Presidentís New Freedom Commission on Mental Health open to the public?

A. Yes. All full Commission meetings were open to the public, although subcommittee meetings were closed.  All Commission decisions were made during public meetings.

 Q.  By what methods did the Commission receive the publicís input?

 A. From June 2002 through April 2003, the Commission solicited public comment from stakeholders in the mental health community. The purpose of obtaining public comment was to assist the Commission in formulating an action plan for the President that would improve America's mental health service delivery system.
The Commission received comments, personal stories and recommendations from nearly 2,500 persons who submitted comments via this website, letters, e-mail, and in-person testimony.  Comments were made by consumers, parents, family members, advocates, service providers, educators, researchers, and other concerned individuals.

Q.  If I have further questions, who can I contact now that the Commission has completed its work?   

A.   Click here to view the Contact page.

Q. Are minutes from the Commission meetings available?

A. Yes.  Click here to review the minutes from the 11 public meetings.

Q. Who chaired and served on the Commission?

A. Click here to view the Commissioners page.

Q. Can I get a list of the Commissionersí background materials that were handed out at the first Commission meeting in June 2002?

A. Yes, click here to view the Bibliography of the Commissionersí background materials.

Q. Was the Presidentís New Freedom Commission on Mental Health tied to President Bushís New Freedom Initiative, which supports ďtearing downĒ barriers for people with mental and physical disabilities?

 A.  Yes.  Please click here to view the Background page for more information.


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This page was last updated on April 30, 2003