Researchers reported that ED visits related to mental-health issues increased seven times as much as the overall rate of visits during the three years and that people with mental-health conditions were admitted twice as often as those with other maladies. The report also noted a higher rate of persons 65 and older seeking treatment, a reflection of our aging population and the stress of the Great Recession, which left many people unemployed and without health insurance. And there is evidence the problem is worsening. According to information from CenterPoint Human Services extracted from state health data by the Journal, the number of people seeking help in emergency rooms for a behavioral-health issue increased 15 percent in the first quarter of 2013 over the same period the year before.
Of course, even the most capable of emergency departments can't "fix" their patient's problems like they do when they set a broken bone or stitch up a bad cut. All they can do is try to stabilize the situation and make a referral to a dwindling list of resources that are already overloaded. More often than not, somebody who should remain in care is discharged, but they'll be back. They may end up down in the basement with the other corpses, but they will return, at least one more time.
GOP leaders also began engineering an end to the state's early voting, Sunday voting and same-day registration provisions, all popular with black voters. Civil rights groups say the moves are designed to restrict poll access by blacks, who vote reliably Democratic.
The moves are only the first indication that the ruling will have "a demonstrably negative impact on voters of color," said Riggs, staff attorney with the Southern Coalition for Social Justice. The group already has a 2-year-old lawsuit pending that alleges racial discrimination in the 1st District and three dozen other North Carolina districts redrawn by Republicans.
The next time you're arguing with a conservative family member/friend/acquaintance over this or that issue, make sure you finish with: "Go ahead and vote your conscience when the time comes, but when you find yourself standing in line for several hours, please remember whose fault that is when you finally step inside the voting booth." That "R" might not seem so shiny when their legs are aching and they have to pee like a racehorse. On the plus side, now even people living in Los Angeles know how screwed up Civitas is:
Because North Carolina leaders cut average weekly benefits for new claims, about 170,000 workers whose state benefits expire this year will lose more than $700 million in EUC payments, the U.S. Labor Department said. The Labor Department declined to comment on North Carolina's looming situation but said no other state is considering changing benefits in a way that would imperil U.S. help.
That's because no other state has a government that has totally abandoned its people in favor of corporate control, and no other state's political party has embraced pay-to-play politics anywhere near the level the NC GOP does. And this kind of mindless rambling makes me furious:
The loss of EUC funding will be devastating to the hardest hit North Carolinians--170,000 former workers who have already been without jobs for six months or more. The loss of funding will also hurt the broader economy, which brings me back to those original GDP figures. At a time when the state's economy is only growing slowly, unevenly, and actually shedding jobs; the legislature and governor are about to pull $700 million directly out of the state's economy. That figure represents 3.5 percent of all of the economic growth that the state experienced last year.
What's even worse, not only are those funds immediately injected into the economy in a diffused manner (spread around), said injected funds are naturally utilized in geographical areas that need it the most. The higher the unemployment rate in a given area, the more people receiving benefits, the more money into the local economy, etc. This was just a bad idea all around, and will likely produce even more unemployed.
The major shift involves privatizing the sales, marketing and support services of the state Commerce Department by moving those duties to a newly created private nonprofit. “Quite honestly, I thought I would explore (privatization) for a year and then we would look at what we needed to do,” Decker told me this week during an interview this week in uptown Charlotte. “But there are a couple of challenges that drove me to the decision that this was the right thing to do."
I'm going to stop her right there, because I detest people who cook up reasons for something they'd already decided to do. Like most Republican "ideas", such as trickle-down economics and deregulation, this privatization scheme has been installed/failed miserably/wasted resources/dropped like a hot potato, only to be resurrected later when everybody forgot how bad the idea was in the first place:
Rep. John Faircloth, a Republican from High Point, questioned a provision that would consider multiple drug offenses as non-violent felonies, in some cases, allowing people to get their guns back. He said some criminals might have simply managed not to get caught over the ensuing years. “I have a problem with drug use and firearms coming together,” Faircloth told the bill’s primary sponsor, Rep. Michael Speciale, a Republican from New Bern. “Does that not concern you at all?”
“Why penalize someone using drugs by taking away their weapons, taking away their right to protect their families and protect themselves?” Speciale said.
I've got a question for you, Einstein: who do you think are the primary victims of a drug abuser's desperate need for money to feed their addiction? That's right, their very own family. If you spent a fraction of the time studying this issue as you do worshiping at the altar of the almighty firearm, you'd realize just how stupid that comment was. He also doesn't believe repeat offenders should be denied the pleasure and pride of gun ownership:
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