Access Coalition
California Coalition for Mental Health
California Youth Empowerment Network
Racial and Ethnic Disparities Coalition
Wellness Works!
NIMH Outreach Partnership Program

Racial and Ethnic Disparities Coalition (REMHDCO)

REMHDCO Mission
To work to reduce mental health disparities through advocacy for racial and ethnic communities.

REMHDCO Vision Statement

  • The coalition will be an effective agent for change in the reduction of mental health disparities.
  • Individuals from ethnically and racially diverse communities will be empowered by the coalition to effectively reduce mental health disparities.
  • What is REMHDCO?
    REMHDCO stands for the Racial & Ethnic Mental Health Disparities Coalition. REMHDCO is a statewide coalition of non-profit state wide and local organizations whose mission is to work to reduce mental health disparities through advocacy for racial and ethnic communities.

    Who does REMHDCO represent?
    Underserved, unserved, and inappropriately served racial and ethnic communities including: Latino, Asian/Pacific Islander, Native American, and African American. REMDHCO also represents non-English and limited English speaking, immigrant and refugee, and Muslim communities.

    Goals and Objectives

    GOAL I.  Establish a statewide coalition to carry out the mission.

    Secure funding for stipends, scholarships and administration of the coalition.

    GOAL II.  Ensure that the needs of people from racial and ethnic communities (consumers, family members, providers, professionals, community leaders) are represented when decisions on mental health policies are made at both the state and local levels.

    GOAL III.  Promote the reduction of disparities in mental health access and treatment as a major component of mental health programs at the state and local levels.

    GOAL IV.  Help ensure that culturally competent mental health services go beyond words in plans or mission statements to actual delivery and provision of these services to reduce disparities.

    GOAL V.  Encourage leadership capacity within racial and ethnic communities to ensure their active participation in the mental health arena.

    Why was REMHDCO formed?
    REMHDCO was formed in response to the lack of representatives from racial and ethnic communities present at statewide mental health meetings, including committees and advisory bodies related to Prop. 63/Mental Health Services Act (MHSA).

    Traditional mental health organizations rarely represent the voices and needs consumers and families from racial and ethnic underserved communities. While people of color make up over 50% of the population of California, it is not unusual to attend a statewide mental health meeting where there are only one or two people of color at the table.

    Just as the life experience of primary consumers and family members is valued and is represented on mental health decision-making bodies, so must the life experience of people from different racial and ethnic underserved communities be valued and represented.

    With the MHSA promise of transforming the entire mental health system in California, representatives from racial and ethnic underserved communities must be at the table when decisions are being made, when programs are being designed, when priorities for services are being discussed.

    So can only people of color belong to REMHDCO?
    NO. REMHDCO welcomes representatives from any organization that agrees with our mission, vision, goals and objectives. It should also be noted that some of the organizations that belong to REMHDCO represent non-English speaking ethnic groups that are white.

    Why doesn’t REMHDCO represent or advocate for all the other communities considered “underserved” (LGBTQI, Transition Age Youth, Rural Communities, women, etc.)?
    REMHDCO welcomes organizations serving any underserved community to join the coalition, and welcomes any person from any underserved community to attend our meetings. REMHDCO would be happy to join another mental health coalition that represented or advocated on behalf all communities considered “underserved”.

    Representing the concerns of racial and ethnic communities is the focus of REMHDCO. These concerns such as adequate outreach, access, language access, and availability of culturally appropriate mental health services to these communities are routinely omitted or not given the attention needed to make a difference. It could even be observed that many statewide advocates in the mainstream mental health community feel uncomfortable addressing the issues of race and ethnicity in regards to services. REMHDCO will facilitate dialogue and understanding so that the opportunity to receive appropriate services related to mental health is shared by all Californians.

    For more information on REMHDCO, please contact Stacie Hiramoto at the number below or email her at: shiramoto@mhac.org


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