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Empowering People with Severe Mental IllnessA Practical Guide$
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Donald M. Linhorst

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195171877

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195171877.001.0001

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Conditions for Empowerment

Conditions for Empowerment

(p.65) 4 Conditions for Empowerment
Empowering People with Severe Mental Illness

Donald M. Linhorst

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes nine conditions for empowering people with severe mental illness. Three conditions are internal to people with mental illness. These include having managed psychiatric symptoms, the skills, and the psychological readiness to participate in activities that have the potential for empowerment. The other conditions exist in the socio-political environment. These include mutual trust and respect, reciprocal concrete incentives, availability of choices, participation structures and processes, access to resources, and a supportive culture. For each condition, the work of Joel F. Handler and relevant material from the general empowerment literature is presented first. Then, incorporating the mental health literature, each condition is applied to empowerment of people with severe mental illness. These conditions provide the structure for assessing empowerment in the seven specific activities included in Chapters 5 through 11.

Keywords:   mental illness, psychiatric symptoms, participation skills, psychological readiness, trust and respect, incentives, choices, participation structures, resources, culture

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