Ad Council Effort Targets Oil Spill Victims

Pro Bono Campaign Offers Mental Health Options for Gulf Coast Residents

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Hoping to help Gulf Coast residents affected by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the Ad Council have released a new public service campaign targeting ongoing emotional trauma caused by the disaster.

The public service effort, created pro bono by Grey New York, Clear Channel Creative Services Group and Lamar Advertising, features Surgeon General Regina Benjamin in a TV spot that tells people where to get assistance for treating and alleviating long-term psychological distress. In addition, radio and outdoor PSAs, in English and Spanish, also offer a toll-free number (1-800-985-5990) or a place to text (TALKWITHUS to 66746) to receive free counseling, information and support from trained professionals.

According to SAMHSA, emotional distress from traumatic events can surface years after an incident occurs.

"For many who live on the Gulf Coast, this disaster has affected us very deeply," Dr. Benjamin said in announcing the campaign. "We want anyone who is feeling distressed to know that getting help can be as simple as making a phone call or sending a text message."