#TheReal5150 | Letter to SaveMart: Please Pull Stigma From Your Shelves

savemart

Hey folks — I just messaged Save Mart Supermarkets this message below on their site. If you feel so inclined to advocate with me please contact them here:https://www.savemart.com/about/contact/contact-us

Greetings,

I’m reaching out because I’m disappointed a store as community-based as Save Mart is helping to promote the stigma of mental illness to their customers by carrying 51-Fifty Energy with the slogan “Live The Madness.” Do you understand what it means to be ‪#‎TheReal5150‬?

I know the stigma of mental illness is so pervasive in our society that it often goes unrecognized by others. Most of my peers aren’t able to stand up and voice their disgust at this product because of the stigma — and it offends them deeply. I’m hoping this is the case here. I’ve been a SaveMart customer since I think my mom could fit me in the shopping cart. Ashlan and West store in Fresno has been my “home” SaveMart most of my life. In my past, I’ve worked withfolks from SaveMart to build their online advertising forModbee.com in the early-mid 2000s.

My experience there cemented my love for SaveMart (and I loved the Deli counter for lunch in Downtown Modesto when I was living there.) I know that this company is compassionate and supportive of the non-profits and other causes that benefit the community.

It’s my hope that you’ll read this letter, read more about this campaign and the folks involved to stop this company from promoting stigma in your stores by pulling them off the shelf until they can do better with their name.

If you are unfamiliar with 5150 — It’s California’s police code for someone in mental crisis that is a danger to themselves, others or gravely disabled.

I am that 1-in-4 person that lives with mental illness. I am that 1-in-17 person that lives with severe mental illness. In 2010 I triggered, while working at Valley Children’s’ Hospital as their social media guru, with Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Working near and around ill children was more than my brain could handle due to severe childhood trauma.

After I triggered, I had to hang up my career as a nationally syndicated writer, social media and digital media expert and online news sites and content development. I was no longer able to walk, talk or provide self-care on any level. I suffered extreme seizures (FND) that felt like I was getting hit by lightening over and over. These can last up to an hour for me and happen, in the early days, up to a dozen times a day. I have tics, tremors, memory drops, loss of cognitive skills and huge chunks of my life are missing due to fluctuating amnesia. Part of that memory loss was not remembering the birth of my daughter — she was 18-months-old at the time I triggered. She just turned 7. Her whole life I’ve been unable to be a full-time parent. This is my greatest loss due to mental illness: motherhood.

I’ve been battling every single step on this journey to recovery — to get this point where I’m at now. I can use my voice again and advocate for my peers who can’t speak. Some can’t speak because they are literally like I was — their voices robbed by the condition. Others can’t speak because they are terrified how the stigma will affect them, and rightly so. So I’m raising my voice here, with you, and ask for your help.

My peers and I can’t get Carlos Vieira to understand that marketing his drink as 51-Fifty Energy Drink with the slogan “Live The Madness” is akin to selling a product called Retarded: Get Your Stupid on. That or Catch Cancer: Live Like There’s No Tomorrow.

It’s offensive and it belittles mine and my peers conditions — our battles to continue on after suffering suicide ideation or compulsion. Our strength is waking up. Every. Single. Day. and living with mental illness. There’s no vacation, no remission, no breather — constant struggle and balance of living with a permanent brain condition — that for me exhibits like and can be more debilitating than Multiple Sclerosis.

We deserve respect and are worthy of being able to shop in our community store and feel comfortable and not stigmatized while selecting products. I know for a fact you have employees who’ve stocked this product, live with mental illness and have experienced the terror of a real 5150 call (our first line of help and never know if the outcome is hospital or jail) that have been very upset by this but not comfortable to bring it up to their manager. One girl went to the bathroom and cried — she was stocking the product and no one knew she had several crisis moments where she needed that type of help.

I’m personally asking you to please help us stop moving this product into our community and further cementing another generation of stigma. Please help #TheReal5150 stop promoting stigma in a can and saying it does good as the excuse for it to be OK.

To use an extreme comparison, and only because this is what it felt like to me, listening to Carlos Vieira tell me in a meeting that he is The Real 51-Fifty, 51-Fifty is him and he created the brand after the term “crazy” because he made choices for high-adrenaline and high-risk sport behaviors … the comparison I make to illustrate how ridiculous his statement and response was — is like a white person telling a black person there’s no such thing as racism because they’ve never experienced it. So it’s OK for them to take the term N(word) (I can’t even spell that out it’s so wrong) and redefine it to mean something edgy and cool they do for a thrill.

Can you understand where I’m coming from? I really hope so and highly encourage if you have any questions for me — please email me at writefirstdaily@gmail.com. My condition makes it very difficult for me to talk on the phone but I can be reached at 559.***-****. Also, if you need more information about living with mental illness, how it affects folks in our community and the severity of lack of access to appropriate care please contact Christina Valdez-Roup, Director of NAMI Fresno at 559.224.2469. She has been an incredible supporter of this campaign and was in attendance as an observer during the meeting with Carlos Vieira this past summer.

Thank you so kindly for your time and consideration. I look forward to your response.

Sincerely,

Eve Hinson
Peer living with PTSD/Functional Neurological Disorder (‪#‎FND‬),
And Autism,
TheReal5150 Advocates Founder, Mental Health Advocate and Speaker,
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Fresno Board Member,
Resources for Independence Central Valley (RICV) Board Member,
Disability Advocacy Team (DAT) Fresno member,
writer, artist, blogger @
www.quirkybirdwords.com.

Added: This is the message I have been sharing as a protest online of this company and non-profit organization.

51-Fifty is the Trump of Energy Drinks.

51-Fifty Energy Drink and Carlos Vieira mock with the name and slogan the real faces and voices of humans who experience a brain disorder — also known as mental illness — and have had to rely on answering questions from police officers as the first-line of help, or worse, were too deep in crisis and needed to be restrained, secured and transported to the hospital or jail.

Having a mental illness is not a choice. Being a badass is a choice.

5150 is California Police Code for those living with mental illness who are in crisis and a danger to themselves, a danger to others or gravelly disabled.

Beyond Carlos Vieira showing zero compassion for #TheReal5150 and redefining his version multiple times throughout the marketing lifecycle of this product — he insists his version is OK. That he is the real deal. The folks at the company have patronized their choice in words as a self-invented homonym to mean adrenline-pumping sports activities. When the company first started, Carlos Vieira said he named 51-Fifty Energy Drink because everyone had always called him “crazy” for his behaviors.

What’s going on with The Carlos Vieira Foundation and 51-Fifty?

Before you jump on this guy’s bandwagon for The Carlos Vieira Foundation — do some homework. 51-Fifty Energy Drink (owned by Carlos Vieira) was created to raise money for autism (cure or awareness not totally sure) and support the good works of The Carlos Vieira Foundation.

Did you know 51-Fifty has sponsored these fundraising events — and spent more money on the party than raised?

“In our meeting with Carlos Vieira he told us he didn’t start the energy drink company to make money.He had plenty of money. Carlos said he started the company to fund the foundation, but in looking at the 2013 IRS filing for the foundation, donations from the energy drink company were approximately only 9,000 dollars.

“We can find no evidence that the IRS filling for the foundation for fiscal year 2014 was completed even though it was due to the IRS in November 2015.”

— Rhonda Moore, #TheReal5150 TheReal5150 Advocates

Carlos Vieira can and needs to do better for all children.

Eve Hinson
Peer living with PTSD/Functional Neurological Disorder (#FND),
And Autism,
TheReal5150 Advocates Founder, Mental Health Advocate and Speaker,
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Fresno Board Member,
Resources for Independence Central Valley (RICV) Board Member,
Disability Advocacy Team (DAT) Fresno member,
writer, artist, blogger @
www.quirkybirdwords.com.

The Carlos Vieira Foundation and 51 Fifty Energy Drink: What’s going on here?
https://quirkybirdwords.com/…/the-carlos-vieira-foundation-…/

Boycott 51 Fifty Energy Drink – CEO says, I Yam What I Yam
https://quirkybirdwords.com/…/boycott-51-fifty-energy-drink…/
Woman With Asperger’s Shot Dead
https://quirkybirdwords.com/…/woman-with-aspergers-shot-dead/

Carlos Vieira: Time to Show Respect to #TheReal5150 and those living with mental illness
https://quirkybirdwords.com/…/carlos-vieira-time-to-show-re…/

The Real 5150 – A social media awareness campaign
https://quirkybirdwords.com/…/the-real-5150-a-social-media-…/

‪#‎bangadrum‬ Don’t ‪#‎livethemadness‬. #TheReal5150‪#‎WeAreWorthy‬‪#‎PeerVoice‬ ‪#‎breakthestigma‬‪#‎eachmindmatters‬ ‪#‎namifresno‬ ‪#‎advocacy‬‪#‎mentalillness‬‪#‎carlosvieira‬ ‪#‎51fifty‬

 

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Lotsa loveeee to our sponsors!❤❤❤

 

 

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