Politicians need to take harder look at cause, effect

Re: Reality check on teen suicide (B.C. Views, Nov. 21)

Re: Reality check on teen suicide (B.C. Views, Nov. 21)

Mr. Fletcher, in his column, makes a comment about Premier Christy Clark’s campaign against teen bullying appearing to be superficial or even self serving. In the world of politics this is nothing new.

You take a problem, say you are going to do something, then deflect attention to something else as the cause and then do nothing to address the real issue.

The column talks about traumatized and mentally ill teens. You mentioned before this that kids were taken from their homes to protect them from their parents. I would like to point out that doing something like forcefully moving someone from their home is a very traumatic incident.

What did the parents do, factually speaking, that required these teens to be moved? Shouldn’t we have addressed that? Not addressing the cause and continually moving these people from place to place only creates more stress and makes the trauma worse.

You mention inadequately trained foster parents and social workers can’t cope with kids who need a diagnosis, treatment, and supervision. One other party who is inadequately trained is the family practitioner. Let us look at the issue of mental illness. How do we define it and what is its cause?

Putting the wrong label on the cause of a problem can make matters much worse.

This is what we see happening here, so I think it is time we stopped passing the buck and dealt with the causes of these problems instead of letting them manifest until we have a traumatic incident and then say we must do something about it.

Jim Bates



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