Tuesday, 20 March 2018

This Friday at 7 PM the Maritime Museum will be hosting a live art show in honour of an enslaved black woman named Anarcha whose body was experimented upon in the 1800’s in order to find a treatment for obstetric fistula. We speak with Habiba Cooper Diallo, the driving force behind the event that features poet and historian Afua Cooper, Dartmouth painter Kim Cain, and spoken word artist Kilah Rolle.

Meet Sophia (not her real name), who lives with a painful illness, raises a son who lives with developmental disabilities, and does all that on a $156 monthly personal allowance, after rent and power bills are paid, and an arrears to Community Services is dealt with. Please let that sink in. $156 per month.  At the bottom of the story we tell you what you can do to help change this.

Applied to current events, no march on Saturday will be better than any other. However, ensuring that there are marches in rural as well as urban areas is crucial in signifying both difference in lived experience and togetherness in the struggle for female empowerment, writes Lori Oliver. She then takes a closer look at two key problems for women in rural Nova Scotia are difficulties accessing abortion services and a higher rate of domestic, intimate partner violence—both of which disastrously intersect with how women continue to earn, on average, 87 cents to men’s $1. Barriers faced by racialized groups are even more severe.

Former Chronicle Herald reporter Mary Ellen MacIntyre writes about an assortment of tactics she has used to entice a new family doctor, including trying to look younger, healthier and more interesting. Late last year there was the robocall to confirm that a doctor was still needed, and even that call became a source of stress. “And so, we wait. Close to one hundred thousand-strong, we wait.”

From Bill Swan’s excellent Faces of Pharmacare website we feature the story of a Nova Scotia woman faced with a $3500 monthly bill for the life saving medications she needs. In her case a solution was found in the end, but “I succeeded because I was determined, persistent and angry enough to take action. I knew how to explain my case. I knew how to write convincing letters. I’d been a bureaucrat and a consultant. Many people are too sick to advocate together with their doctors; many people are intimidated by the system; they know it is not fair but feel powerless to influence decisions.”

Late last week Nova Scotia’s auditor general reported that the province lacks a plan for delivering mental health services to all Nova Scotians, and that standards for wait times aren’t being met. New contributor Jessica Briand has seen it all. “In the last seven years I have seen eight different mental health professionals. I’ve witnessed first-hand the flaws in mental healthcare in Nova Scotia,” she writes.

Both shocking and shockingly normal, My name is…, a short six-minute video gives voice to Shelburne residents worried about the state of healthcare in their neck of the woods. ER closures, lack of doctors, it’s scary to live in rural Nova Scotia these days if you need medical support.