Editorial — Personal stories, ideas can help heal behavioral-health system

Date Published: 
Feb. 9, 2018

While we generally like to think of our community as a little slice of paradise, there’s no denying that this area has witnessed firsthand the nation’s opioid epidemic, from loved-ones lost or struggling with addiction to drug-related crime. Many of us also know someone who struggles with mental health issues, or are ourselves dealing with such challenges, and we know, too, that local mental health resources are sorely lacking.

So it shines a light at the end of the tunnel when we hear that the State of Delaware, and specifically Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long — herself a nurse — are putting a new focus on how the State can better address these needs in the community. It’s even more striking that they are asking for input from the public, so those of us with children, siblings, parents, partners and friends dealing with these challenges, or doing so ourselves, can offer up our experiences and suggestions on ways to meet those needs.

The Behavioral Health Consortium is holding community forums throughout Delaware this month, with the local one being set for this Thursday, Feb. 15, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the Georgetown Public Library. We would encourage anyone who has a stake in this issue — and that’s basically all of us — to attend and give the State as much feedback and as many ideas as you can.

There is no way for one person, one county or one agency to solve these crises in our community, but there is undeniable power in a community joined together toward a common goal.