The Global Need for Lived Experience Leadership

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Topic: Common challenges and experiences of the lived experience/peer workforce globally are considered, with an emphasis on ensuring that future developments both protect and promote the unique lived experience perspective. Purpose: In the Western world, rapid growth in lived experience roles has led to an urgent need for training and workforce development. However, research indicates the roles risk being coopted without clear lived experience leadership, which is often not occurring. In developing countries and in many Western contexts, the lived experience role has not yet been accepted within the mental health workforce. The need for lived experience leadership to guide these issues is highlighted. Sources: Peer-reviewed research, relevant gray literature, and professional experience in countries where little published material currently exists. Conclusions and Implications for Practice: A window of opportunity currently exists to maximize lived experience leadership, and that window may be closing fast if broad-based actions are not initiated now.

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