Debra Gatlin. Bachelor of Arts, Sociology, California State University Northridge. Worked over 30 years as an Administrative Professional in a variety of industries for companies such as Boeing, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, Southern California Edison, Universal Oil Products Company and Transamerica Insurance Group.
A Southern California native, I traveled the United States and lived in Chicago, Illinois, Albany, New York, Lubbock, Texas and Las Vegas, Nevada.
Current residence in North Long Beach, California.
Works for the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health as a Mental Health Advocate and Case Manager.
It is my desire to make a difference in the lives of vulnerable, disenfranchised and often voiceless individuals and communities, and empower them to live independently with dignity.Desiring to help people with mental health challenges navigate services to help them live independent and autonomous lives, I volunteered as a Wellness Outreach Worker for the Department of Mental Health, which ultimately led to employment as a Mental Health Advocate.
I currently provide Case Management services assisting mental health consumers in accessing resources related to housing, benefits, food, clothing, employment and other needed supportive services. My caseload consists of people with mental health challenges who are also experiencing homelessness. Knowing the challenges associated with homelessness, I strive to assist, support and house consumers while providing intentional peer support. No matter our problems, situations or circumstances, everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. Just as we can't readily look at a person and see their mental health challenges, we shouldn't judge a person because they are homeless; we never know the situations that have brought us to this place.
2017 Peer Housing Specialist Certification, Pacific Clinics Training Institute.
2017 Lived Experience Advisory Board, Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority.
2016 Most Innovative Wellness Outreach Worker, County of Los Angeles Department of Mental Health.
2015 Peer Advocacy Certification, Pacific Clinics Training Institute.
2015 Microsoft Office Suite Programs Instructor Certification, Microsoft Virtual Academy.