Friday, 22 June 2018

Frequent contributor Tim Blades on living in poverty, his struggle with illness and mental health issues, and the urgent need to be compassionate and open with one another. “Now I want to delete that last paragraph. My heart is racing just from typing that last paragraph. While I want to be safe and delete that last paragraph, If I let go of that secret, it’s just one less thing for me to hold onto.”

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.

Kendall Worth with a short and sad story about a woman living with developmental disabilities and mental health issues who lost her job and is dreading the day she will have to apply for social assistance.

New contributor Catherine Meyers reflects on the state of mental healthcare in Nova Scotia and the death of her husband at a young age, a death that may well have been preventable. “There are still too many situations like the one I experienced, where people, especially youth, don’t get the right kind of mental health care.”

Kendall Worth investigates involuntary and so-called inappropriate body language, things like fidgeting in public, talking to yourself (in some cases out loud), making big hand movements that make a person look like they are trying to start a fight with someone, or engage in evil-looking facial expressions. He talks to middle and upper class people who don’t really understand, a police officer and the people who actually do those types of things.

This week we have a wonderful documentary about some of the people who visit Connections, a place in Halifax that supports people who are recovering from mental illness.

Frequent contributor Kendall Worth tackles the serious topic of social isolation. He looks at causes for isolation other than poverty, and particularly puts alcoholism under the loop. But poverty can certainly add to the problem, Kendall explains. He ends with a list of suggestions anybody can try, from joining a book club to becoming an activist.