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Citizen concerned about mental health care in St. Lucia (letter to the editor)

Letter to the Editor

letter-to-the-editorI am writing to share my concern with the authorities and the ones who claim that they are here to help, rescue and assist us in time of need.

Today a family and community in Bexon had an experience which in my belief should have been handled better. I would love if this letter reaches the local authorities as i am saddened by the experience.

This all started on March 20th, where one of the out patients of the mental hospital started acting up. My belief is that the patient had a troubled childhood and is facing a lot of financial stress along with family issues.
She had with her two of her last children and came to spend some time with family. In order to get assistant in dealing with this lady, the family called the police around 5:00 pm on March 20th and the response from the officer was:

”I will have to speak to my supervisor who will be contacting you soon’,’ to date no one has called with a follow up.

On the morning of March 21st it got a lot more wild and these children’s’ lives were at risk, people who were trying help from the community were putting their lives at risk as well.

the police was called upon a second time and this time another excuse was given:

‘There are only two of us on duty and i can not leave the office, my supervisor will be coming in a while and i will hand over the matter to him”.

Several attempts were made to the mental hospital via phone and there was no answer. When someone did finally pick up I was told to come to the hospital to get a form to take to the police station to get assistance.

That was around 8:45 am and I proceeded to do as a was told.

Upon arrival at the central police station, i was rather shocked at the service that was given.

the receptionist at the desk was on her phone and not for once did she look up to see who was there, let alone know why I was there. bearing in mind I left an unstable woman with two kids who no one knows what she has in mind to do.

Finally i got assistance, not from the receptionist but another officer, only to hear that two officers had left the office 45 mins ago to the scene. To get to the point with them, all I was saying is procedures have to be put in place in cases like this. The children’s lives were at risk, people who were trying to calm her down lives were at risk when all that was required was an officer, a psychiatric worker , or doctor, all who could have helped.

Some one could have died, thank God no one did, who knows what could have happened. If anything did happen it was only then the authorities would rush to Bexon to carry out an investigation.

Who are we depending on when we need help?

Why aren’t we investing in our own peoples’ education? Not everyone can afford schooling for psychology, people are passionate about it and would do great things for the population who needs it and are not available.

The Local police in this case was rather careless.

This was clear as the response from one of the officers was: ”

“This early morning i have to deal with mad people”.

Quite amused at what he said I looked and shooked my head.

Like I said earlier I would love to get a response from the authorities about this matter as well as how they think this could have been handled.

The form which was requested was never received, So it was not needed after all.

Why put someone through all this and the so call request form did not matter upon arrival at the central police station?

regards,

(6)(0)
This article was posted in its entirety as received by stlucianewsonline.com. This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of stlucianewsonline.com, its sponsors or advertisers.

3 comments

  1. The police need training in dealing with the mentally challenged so we cant blame them entirely. The people are of unsound mind like you said anything can happen. The mentally challenged and their families are maginalised and stigmatised we as a society need to be educated about mental illness. The country needs expertise in that field. It is high time the mentally ill are treated with a little more respect and empathy.

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  2. I am so glad you brought up this topic, everything you said in this article is the truth. The workers do not care about the mentally ill, especially if it does not involve their family or friends, sad. I would like to see that government workers behave professionally. They behave differently when that person has a name that is known. The government should train their workers, how to respect the public. Without people, the local people i mean, you are not needed. I WOULD LIKE THIS WORKER TO BE FIRED....... I hope that you get others to back up your concerns. GOD BLESS YOU FOR SPEAKING OUT ....

    (2)(0)
  3. Clearly, our Police force is not properly trained and equipped to handle mentally unstable persons. The challenge is how to fund trained and professional mental care workers

    (3)(0)

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