Can this boy’s death begin the dialogue necessary to fix our mental health system?

by | Jan 7, 2014 | Editor's Blog, Mental health, NC Politics

Is mental health a place where we can find bi-partisanship to help people? And is the tragedy down in Brunswick County the catalyst that can bring people of all persuasions together to find solutions?

Last weekend, police shot to death an 18 year-old, 90 pound boy, Keith Vidal, in his own home. He suffers from schizophrenia and his parents called police to help them when he was having an episode. They never expected him to die.

Nobody wants a repeat of what happened. And everyone agrees that it was preventable. The official cause of death may have been a gun shot wound but the whole thing happened because of the failure of the mental health system.

Today, the conservative Civitas Institute highlighted the tragedy. So did Sarah Ovaska on the Progressive Pulse. And Pat McCrory has said fixing the mental health system is among his priorities.

Each side may have different ideas about how to fix it, but they all agree that it is broken. That’s a start. The next step is a dialogue.


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