National Alliance on Mental Illness
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April 20, 2007

Virginia Tech Tragedy: Responses and Resources

The tragedy at Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University (Virginia Tech) in which 32 professors and students were killed has had a profound emotional impact on all Americans—including NAMI members, who consist of individual living with serious mental illnesses, their families and friends.

NAMI offers condolences to all who lost loved ones in the tragedy, including the family of the horribly troubled young man responsible for the rampage—who never received adequate treatment for his illness.

The tragedy raises debate on issues that NAMI has has raised for years over the nation’s fragmented mental healthcare system.The primary purpose of this Web site page is not to engage in debate, but to provide information and resources to people who are still seeking to understand and cope with the tragedy—and to direct them to Web sites where they can express support to the Virginia Tech community.

NAMI’s mission is founded on hope and faith. Out of any tragedy, we hope that some good will come.


Related Links

  • In their honor presents profiles of the victims, accompanied by thoughts and memories shared by those who knew them.
  • Virginia Tech
    Official school Web site provides the latest news and perspectives.
    Online site for Virginia Tech's student newspaper.
  • Understanding Mental Illness - After the Virginia Tech Tragedy
    From the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) a collection of resources and informational materials to build better public understanding about mental health problems. This includes fact sheets on the facts and myths of mental illnesses - including issues of violence, information on SAMHSA's National Anti-Stigma Campaign targeting young adults with the theme of "What a Difference a Friend Makes", real stories of people in recovery from mental illnesses, training materials to develop mentally healthy schools, and much more.
  • Coping with Traumatic Events
    From SAMHSA
    a series of resources on how to respond to a traumatic event including materials for responders/health professionals, students, schools, adults and families.

Policy Discussion

This section is for those persons who want to consider policy issues now being debated in the news and legislatures, including Congress. They range from stigma and privacy rights to court-ordered treatment and gun control.

Policy Perspectives on Virginia Tech tragedy
policy positions for the current debate are summarized  for consideration in the new round of debate.

Other Resources

  • T-shirt sales honor victims
    Students raise money for a scholarship to honor the victims of the VA Tech tragedy. (opens new window to