Yes, there was some awkwardness in tackling the details of the public MHDDSA system--candidates have not had to talk about our system to get elected before. Yesterday, in front of a packed room of advocates, consumers, and family members, these candidates came to recognize that this issue is indeed an important campaign issue. The Coalition Candidates' Forum and NCMentalHealthVOTE.org are proof that business as usual is over.
Some quotable quotes:
Bill Graham: "Failure is not an option."
Pat Smathers: "The system must have adequate funding."
Dennis Neilson: "The system is in free fall."
Beverly Perdue: "Expand the medical home concept to include mental health services as well." And "I know many like privatization but we have to have a public safety net."
Richard Moore: "We must rebuild the safety net so we don't turn to the criminal justice system. Failure always seems to get fixed by a $26,000 a year bed (in a prison)." And "The biggest problem is that there is no accountability. You should hold your next governor accountable!"
NC Psychiatric Association