Protests prompt policing changes, but skeptics doubt they will be enough
WASHINGTON — The first day protesters gathered outside Colorado’s Capitol in May to call for policing changes, state Rep. Leslie Herod stood with them.“I could hear the anger and feel the frustration, and I felt it too,” she said. “As an elected official, I realized it was time to act.”Herod, who chairs the Black Democratic Legislative Caucus, began putting together legislation to require body cameras for officers, set up a database of fired officers and prohibit use of chemical irritants during protests. The House and Senate quickly passed it and Democratic Gov. Jared Polis signed it.Only 21 ...
Naomi Ishisaka: Locking up people with mental health issues won't help. Here's what will
It took 30 years of searching, but Rick Hoffman finally found the healing he was looking for.Since childhood, Hoffman (Santee Dakota Sioux) struggled with generational and familial trauma, abuse, addiction and ultimately, about 12 years of incarceration.But two years ago, in the last week of a 90-day stint at Seattle Indian Health Board’s Thunderbird Treatment Center in Rainier Beach, Washington, he said he finally found his path. “We were singing our traditional Native American songs and it hit home. It was like my ancestors, my relatives, they covered me with a blanket and said, ‘You know, y...
The Seattle Times
Gracie Bonds Staples: How this foundation makes sure teens get the mental care they need
No one plans to get sick, but most of us will need medical or mental health care at some point in our lives. When we do, health insurance is supposed to cover those costs.Right?Not necessarily.If you haven’t felt the sting of rejection from your insurance company, just keep living.It happened to Maya McNairy recently when she needed it the most. After two failed suicide attempts, McNairy needed mental health care beyond the standard six weeks, but her insurance company refused to pay.Had it not been for the Hillside Atlanta Foundation, that would’ve been the end of it.“I would not be alive rig...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Health care workers will feel stress of coronavirus long after pandemic is over, researchers say
AUSTIN, Texas — Over the past four months, health care workers have been struggling to keep up with the demand caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The virus has put immense stress on some hospitals, diminished personal protective supplies, and, in some cases, forced doctors and nurses to separate from their families for fear of contagion.The overwhelming demand for health care, combined with the trauma of seeing high numbers of severe and dying patients, has taken a toll on many clinicians’ mental health.“It’s really been a tsunami of stress,” said Dr. Charles B. Nemeroff, chair of the Departm...
Handgun ownership significantly increases suicide risk, study finds
A new study by Stanford University researchers found that handgun owners are nine times more likely to die by suicide than non-gun owners. The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine this month, confirms what mental health experts have known for decades — that there is a positive correlation between firearm ownership and suicide risk.The findings are particularly relevant as many Americans have become new handgun owners since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Industry data show retailers sold 2.5 million firearms in March, an 85% increase over the same period last year. T...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Former NBA player Gerald Wilkins arrested multiple times in last two weeks, sent to hospital for mental health evaluation
NEW YORK — Sounds like Gerald Wilkins is in a dangerous place right now.The former NBA player was recently arrested twice for assault in Georgia and another time was sent to the hospital for a mental health evaluation, according to police records obtained by the New York Daily News.The most alarming alleged incident occurred June 6 when Wilkins, 56, who is the brother of NBA legend Dominique Wilkins, barricaded himself inside his girlfriend’s bedroom for 2 1/2 hours, disabled the fire alarm and began pouring “accelerants and other liquids through the cracks of the door repeatedly (rubbing alco...
New York Daily News
Pete Davidson struggles with mental health in autobiographical 'King of Staten Island'
The opening scene of “The King of Staten Island” sends a signal to anyone expecting raucous laughs: It depicts a suicide attempt.The autobiographical comedy/drama stars Pete Davidson (“Saturday Night Live”) as Scott, a 24-year-old on New York City’s Staten Island who spends his time sketching tattoos, watching “SpongeBob SquarePants” and smoking weed in his mom’s (Marisa Tomei) basement. They’ve never talked about the death of Scott’s dad, and he is self-medicating with pot because, as he tells a friend, “I’m scared of myself and I don’t want to hurt you or anyone.”Davidson has been candid abo...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Ex-firefighter being treated for PTSD completes 80-mile fundraising run to help other first responders facing same struggle
A day after he ran 80 miles to raise money for colleagues struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder, former firefighter and paramedic Ryan Mains was sore, tired and thankful.“I don’t know how I can express my gratitude,” he said from his home in Huntley. “The support we got in the months leading up to it and yesterday was so incredible.”Mains’ 21 1/2-hour odyssey Saturday was meant as a tribute to the 130 firefighters and EMS personnel who took their own lives in 2019 — he ran 1 km for each of them — and as a way to bring visibility and funds to a cause with which he has painful personal ...
Living with Children: The power of 'no'
In 1972, a Stanford University psychologist conducted a study in which young children, individually, were offered either a small but immediate reward (a marshmallow or a pretzel) or a doubled reward if they were able to wait for 15 minutes. In follow-up studies, researchers found that children who were able to postpone gratification experienced better life outcomes as measured by such things as SAT scores, academic achievement and body mass index.I have long maintained that well-done research in the so-called social sciences does nothing but confirm common sense, and it certainly seems common-...
Tribune News Service
Q&A: Mental health tips for handling the pandemic
Week after week, the coronavirus lockdown has caused growing stress and anxiety as social connections and routines are broken and re-arranged.Santa Clara University psychology professor Thomas Plante has been a close observer of the psychological burdens mounting on the community: distracted students, struggling patients, and others interrupting therapy to shelter in place and hoping things don’t get worse.Plante has a small private practice in addition to his university and research responsibilities. Plante and his wife, Lori, also a psychologist, have been treating patients remotely. It’s be...
The Mercury News