Letters Oct. 10: Mental health; better medical coverage

Struggling to deal with mental health issues

Oct. 10 is World Mental Health Day. The Canadian Mental Health Association says that one in five Canadians will experience a mental health condition or illness in any given year.

This means that about 80,000 people in Greater Victoria are struggling with their mental health at any given time.

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The impacts for these people are often experienced through their relationships. Whether relating to themselves, their family and friends, or the community at large, the result is usually greater social isolation and a decreased experience of general wellness.

Maintaining or finding employment becomes difficult, if not impossible. Often, this further erodes self confidence and the hope that they will recover.

Without meaningful social connection, support, and a felt sense of purpose, recovery is unlikely.

People around the world are reporting higher incidences of emerging mental health conditions. Experiences of anxiety and depression are rising and the need for mental health services is greater than ever before. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated our community’s sense of social isolation, while reducing access to the supports and services that people have come to rely on to find help.

Disrupting isolation and staying connected are at the centre of our work at Connections Place. Offering the opportunity to engage in employment-related programming, community, and building meaningful relationships help people find recovery.

Please join us in raising awareness and support of mental health in our community and around the world.

Chris Forester
Executive director
Connections Place

Extend health coverage above the neck

Why is nothing above the neck covered by our Medical Service Plan? Teeth, eyes (glasses), ears (aids). I’m a senior and the out of pocket expenses for these necessary aids to our quality of life would greatly be appreciated.

Gerald Marantz

Deb Hope will be greatly missed

Thanks very much for publishing the fine tribute to Deb Hope.

I worked with Deb at the Ottawa bureau of the Canadian Press in the 1970s. She was then Deb vander Graat. You could always tell when she was in the office as the laugh that is described in the story resonated throughout the bureau.

Later, when we both worked in Vancouver — she was with United Press Canada — we went for lunch as I was leaving for a job in Toronto. We chuckled over the beige trench coat she was wearing, because it reminded me of Peter Falk in the detective series Columbo. Those who are old enough may recall how Falk, after interviewing a suspect or witness, always turned back to ask one final question, which was the key to solving a mystery.

Deb reminded me of that.

She is a credit to the journalistic profession and clearly is greatly missed.

Vic Parsons


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