Letter to the Editor published on 3/12/2014
MICHELLE LANDE HUGHES, Winston-Salem
A major overhaul
The state’s mental-health system needs a major overhaul. Everyone knows it, but little is being done.
Mental-health advocates know that one of the main obstacles to fixing the problem is to erase the stigma. More needs to be done to raise awareness and let people know that it is OK to get help.
We need to educate people so that they will recognize signs in themselves preventing emergencies and tragedies.
U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy has introduced mental-health legislation. It’s unfortunate that even advocates can’t decide if it is good or bad. Therefore, once again, most likely nothing will change.
We don’t need bills passed or mismanaged money to fix the broken mental-health system. We need those with mental illnesses respected and their voices heard.
We need those people who make the decisions as to how and where the money is spent to put the needs of the people they serve their top priority. People should not have to wait for treatment resulting in trips to the ER or worse. I think that the taxpayer’s dollars are not being spent wisely and it needs to be evaluated.
There needs to be accountability. Where is it going to come from? Who is going to hold the people who are making the decisions responsible? I think that the people in the community need to do it. However, what power do we really have? I, as someone with a mental illness and a citizen, don’t think I have any.