Stigma-Free UC

“Mental health issues touch all of us. For example, anxiety and mood disorders appear in nearly every family; suicide rates are climbing; rates of ADHD and autism spectrum disorders are soaring. Although our understanding of, and treatment options for, mental illness have expanded dramatically over the past 60 years, public attitudes have largely remained unchanged. Stigma persists, preventing too many people from getting the help they need.” ~Stephen Hinshaw, Professor of Psychology, UC Berkeley and of Psychiatry, UCSF. 

All UC faculty and staff are invited to attend several informative webinars, which launch the Systemwide WellBeing Initiative’s "Stigma-Free UC" effort to raise awareness about mental health issues and reduce barriers to treatment. More information about UC’s behavioral health benefits, including free services through faculty and staff assistance programs, is available here:

Webinars available for viewing on UC Net, sponsored by the UC Human Resources Systemwide WellBeing Initiative:

  • Anxiety-From Boredom to Burnout (run time: 63 minutes)
    Robert Bota, associate clinical professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at UC Irvine, will address questions: When does stress begin to affect mental health? When is anxiety a symptom of a psychiatric illness that warrants professional help? and more. Dr. Botas professional work focuses on the interplay between psychiatric illnesses and medical conditions, and explores innovative ways to address the spectrum of patients psychosomatic needs.
  • Suicide-Understanding and Eliminating Stigma (run time: 58 minutes)
    Steven Korn, M.D., is the medical director for behavioral health for the Anthem East Coast plans. Dr. Korn will lead a discussion of the stigma surrounding suicide and how it gets in the way of efforts to help survivors and those at risk. Learn strategies for reducing stigma and boosting suicide prevention efforts.
  • Finding Your Words (run time: 64 minutes)
    Dr. Yener Balan, MD, executive director of Behavioral Health for Kaiser Permanente, Northern California, will present a webinar about Kaisers Find Your Words campaign. During our discussion, Yener will explain the importance of starting conversations about mental health and share tips about what to say and what not to say to someone experiencing depression. This initiative is designed to end the stigma that keeps people silent about mental health, encouraging all of us to talk about mental health without fear and judgment, ask for help if we need it, and help others get the support they need.
  • What is Mental Health Awareness and What Can We Do Better? (run time: 53 minutes)
    Ross Szabo, Wellness Director at UCLA’s Geffen Academy and CEO of Human Power Project, discusses how we can improve our efforts to raise awareness of the importance of mental health.
  • Mass Shootings, Firearms and the Mental Health System (run time: 41 minutes)
    Amy Barnhorst, Medical Director of a county crisis unit and 50-bed psychiatric hospital and Vice Chair for Community Psychiatry at UC Davis, discusses the ways in which a focus on mass shooters as mentally ill risks both increasing stigma against people with mental illness and drawing the focus away from other groups of people at higher risk of violence.
  • Positive Psychology-Tools to Support Resilience, Wellbeing and Creative Achievement (run time: 50 minutes)
    Robert Bilder — Director of the Mind Well pod within UCLA’s Healthy Campus Initiative, Chief of Medical Psychology-Neuropsychology at UCLA’s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, and Director of the Tennenbaum Center for the Biology of Creativity — speaks about the potential of positive psychology to improve emotional health.
  • Ending Shame and Silence Surrounding Mental Illness (run time: 67 minutes)
    Stephen Hinshaw, Professor of Psychology at UC Berkeley and of psychiatry at UCSF, shared insights about mental health and stigma gathered both through his distinguished research career and his family history.
  • The Effects of Stigma on Public Health (run time: 62 minutes)
    Bruce Link, UC Riverside Distinguished Professor of Public Policy and Sociology, discusses how people with mental illnesses are harmed by the social stigma they experience — and what we can do to reduce that stigma.
  • The Neglected Addict: Understanding Stigma, Students and Recovery (run time: 55 minutes)
    Ann Cheney, UC Riverside Asst. Professor in Dept. of Social Medicine, Population and Public Health at the UC Riverside School of Medicine discusses the impact of stigma on a group that is too often invisible; college and university students who are in recovery from substance abuse. Cheney will also share self-care strategies for the staff who provide treatment for students in recovery.

UC Santa Cruz Employee Assistance Program available to all faculty, staff and enrolled family members.  Whether you want to resolve a stressful work situation, find child or elder care resources, or get advice about a financial concern, your EAP can help.  You have access to in–person support for a wide range of personal and work-related issues, such as:


Substance Abuse

Legal/financial questions

Workplace effectiveness

Managing stress & anxiety

Coping with grief and loss