Mental health support for all in Roaring Fork Valley | AspenTimes.com
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Mental health support for all in Roaring Fork Valley

We are not without racism in this lovely valley. My Japanese son-in-law has experienced it here (not by the police). We also need to be sensitive to the fact that some people lack opportunities and at times are treated rudely. The immigrant community here deserves the same protection and care as the Anglo community.

Thank you to the Carbondale mayor for his excellent Sopris Sun published reaction to the current national situation and to local police for expressing their outrage at George Floyd’s murder. We need all police to take whatever training they can to work with the public safely and courteously. We can support them through collaboration.

I call attention to something that is part of police violence in the U.S. Returning war veterans are given preference by federal law for hire by police departments. Screening for PTSD is minimal and not required. I don’t know if our local law enforcement does such screening. Twenty percent of police nationally are veterans, and 20% of veterans have PTSD from war trauma. Only half seek help. Police who have been veterans are more likely to be aggressive due to their trauma (see “When Warriors Put On the Badge” at http://www.Marshall Project.org).

There is a culture amongst soldiers and police that frowns on asking for help, yet they face danger often.

Let’s make sure that community members, our veterans and our local police have access to excellent mental health services. Let’s have an environment that supports healing from trauma. Trauma not only creates suffering, it can cause violent outbursts towards others and self. All people should be able to get help mental health care. People of all colors deserve compassion.

Illene Pevec

Carbondale


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