This article aims to identify the meaning that members of an association of users attribute to a Psicosocial Attention Center, utilizing a qualitative research approach. The data was obtained through semi-structured interviews which were analyzed using the Social Representation theory. The theoretical framework is supported by the contributions of the Brazilian Psychiatric Reform and the psychosocial attention clinic. The results show that users value Psicosocial Attention Center as an information and educational center, a place building autonomy, of belonging, and as a political and empowerment tool. In conclusion, the Association of Users could play a significant role in the Brazilian psychiatric reform process, provided they feel free from certain forms of embarrassments and their actions may eventually start a reflection upon an important contribution to social inclusion of mentally disabled people. It becomes important to work in an integrated form in the realm of public policy and to monitor the services in association with other segments of society.
Community psychiatry; Health sector reform; Mental health