Awareness is not enough

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week. The statistic that 1 in 5 Canadians will experience mental illness in their lifetime is being repeated over and over on my Facebook and Twitter feeds. Awareness is awesome, but it’s not enough. Politicians are tweeting that they are raising awareness but what we really need is funding. We need more psychiatrists so that it doesn’t take a year to get in to see one. We need publicly funded therapy so that we can stay out of the hospital and keep working (and paying taxes!). We need mental health services that are as easy to access as a family doctor visit. We cannot continue to talk about awareness and continue to not fund treatment. The stigma of mental illness will never go away when our treatments are expensive; this makes them appear as an optional treat for the wealthy. It would save money to fund treatment; it’s time to do the math and get it right.

Alberta Voted

The NDP are here

Prentice shed a tear

At least I cast a vote

“X” in the circle I wrote

Now comes the fear

As plans go into gear

But I think we’ll all be fine

Rachel Notley isn’t nine

So please stop all your whining

Alberta will keep shining

Oil, mountains, and prairie

Our province is far from scary

We will shine through

Because of people like you

We’ve turned the page

No more time to rage

So support your MLA

Don’t forget to say:

“Thanks for all you do,

It’s okay that you’re new.

It’s great you’re there for me,

and our constituency.”