Decades of policy makers not understanding or ignoring mental health issues and failing to see the explosive growth of veterans returning with life destroying PTSD, the huge increase of children in child protection resulting from less help for young families suffering from generational child abuse & trauma is coming down hard on schools, law enforcement and health providers.  All our institutions and communities are paying the price.

Sue Abderholden (Sunday Star Tribune) is far too kind to legislators and administrators who make the policies impacting young families and other people needing help in our communities.

Lawmakers saving small dollars by not supporting basic services (crisis nurseries, daycare or mental health services) are costing taxpayers decades of state ward status, crime and preteen pregnancies for people that could have been helped, could have become self-sufficient tax paying community members.

It is the job of people making the laws and public policies to better understand core issues and support programs that make our communities safer and healthier.

That’s not the case today with the nasty politics that have given short shrift to public health, public schools and things like crisis nurseries, mental health services and quality daycare.

Sue Abderholden points out that the lack of transparency and problems of hiring trained people for corporate foster care homes are overwhelming problems.

Troubled children held overnight in ERs for lack of space, child suicide and other self-harming behaviors along with forcing psychotropic medications on almost a third of State Ward children are signs of a community that truly doesn’t value other people’s children or understand the economics of a growing population of seriously dysfunctional people.

The forced closing of MN group homes for repeated serious violations, a growing number of hospitals refusing to accept mental health patients, 800 to 1000 emergency psych visits at HCMC each year (a single MN hospital) and MN sheriffs threatening lawsuits over the State’s failure to provide timely mental health services to the people in their custody are the tip of the iceberg of MN’s institutional crisis.

You can live a pretty good life with a physical illness or disability but it’s much more difficult to get by for veterans and the tens of thousands of Minnesota traumatized children reported to child protection each year because they do not receive anywhere near the help they need.

The 50 children this CASA volunteer guardian ad litem spoke for in child protection were forced onto Prozac like drugs instead of trauma informed care.  I have few happy stories among these children.

Most of them went on to lead very sad lives.

Self-harming behaviors, violence and preteen pregnancies leading to the next generation of children without coping skills and a plethora of mental health issues they bring with them to school and into the community.   Cast your vote for lawmakers that speak intelligently to these issues (share this widely and send it to your state rep).