In a series of recent articles, the Argus-Courier has explored the issue of mental health care and the dearth of resources dedicated to services. Even families who seek help often can’t find anywhere to turn for support, which can lead to devastating consequences. In this week’s poll, a small majority felt the government should do more to help those suffering from mental illness. Others felt it was a cost the public shouldn’t bear.
Here were some of the comments.
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“I don’t believe that treatment of mental illness falls within the scope of the federal Constitution.”
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“I know the economy is rough, but so would be the cost of letting youth and the adults suffering with mental problems. I have two children dealing with this affliction, and see the difficulty they are having in their lives.”
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“Mental illness is often not addressed because it is not seen. However, the crimes, suicides and victims of those who are diagnosed with/without mental illness are seen widely in the media. We just need to make the connection.”
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“No, lower my taxes. I pay 39.6 percent to the federal government plus 13.3 percent to the state  and 6.2 percent to Social Security — that’s more than 60 percent.”
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“Part of living in a civilized society means taking care of those unable to care for themselves, such as the elderly, children and mentally ill. Ignoring the problems puts us in a barbaric state that is too sad for words.”
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“This is such a sad topic. There are so many people out there left untreated because they don’t have the means to seek help or they don’t know how to go about getting help. I wish the public had more resources on this.”
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“Voices fall silent when it comes to addressing mental illness in our community. Just knowing who to turn to and how to access support is difficult for those in crisis and their families.”
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“Yes, it is essential that resources be dedicated to serving those with mental illness. Mental illness is a major contributor to family problems, homelessness, lost work days, child behavioral difficulties and it keeps people from supporting themselves and contributing to a community. Those who are treated, families who can get help easily and early can recover from mental illness. It is wrong to let the most vulnerable amongst us simply get lost in the system until they get arrested for homelessness, odd behavior or until children start to show problems in school. Early identification and treatment is key. But, it will take money to accomplish effective outreach and treatment.”
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“Enough money goes to taxes, fees, bonds and other means. If the government needs money in one area transfer from another area. Start with Head Start, free school lunches and breakfasts, free after school day care, free before school daycare, people on entitlement programs who shouldn’t be on them, safety net programs that serve those who don’t deserve it, school funding for illegal immigrants, free housing, Social Security and on and on and on.”
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“Absolutely.”