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Education, support, understanding part of battle vs. mental illness

Updated: March 6, 2013 6:18AM

Education, support, understanding part of battle vs. mental illness

I would like to thank The Courier-News and Denise Crosby for her sensitive column (Jan. 31) about local NAMI chapters. Until we start giving mental illness the attention it deserves, remove stigma and offer hope to people with mental illnesses, and their families and friends, we can expect little progress.

Mental illness can affect us all in ways we might not think about — our police and fire departments, our hospital emergency rooms, our houses of worship, our workplaces. The cost in manpower to assist people in crisis, the loss of work productivity, and the emotional toll on faith community leaders who may not have training in mental illness issues is huge. The families and friends of people with mental illness are affected emotionally and financially as they try to get assistance for their loved ones.

We are well-aware that the state of Illinois has serious funding issues, and the kinds of programs we hope for may be a long time in coming.

However, on a personal level, on a human level, we can all invest some time in educating ourselves about mental illness. These are illnesses that are biologically based. No one would wish to have a mental illness. These are equal-opportunity illnesses; they affect people of all races, education, religious beliefs, ages and backgrounds. The signs of the illness are often not visible, so our instinct to say “Snap out of it!” is common — and especially painful to people working hard to recover. Harrison Ford, in a recent public service announcement, commented “Why is mental illness the only disease you can get yelled at for having?”

There are community-based programs that can help. NAMI Kane County North ( is a chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and offers education and support programs at no cost. The Kane County Mental Health Council ( can offer guidance to appropriate programs.

As members of the larger community of mankind, we must keep the conversation going, for the good of all.

Laurie Huske

Board president, NAMI Kane County North


Kane County Forest Preserve District chief set to seek more of our money

I see where the always-hungry lion is hungry once again, as evidenced by his mighty roar, “We’ve got to TAX more; we are almost out of money.”

Yes, Kane County Forest Preserve District president, the hungriest lion, has declared that they have spent nearly all of the $30 million dollars that they stole from the taxpayers (fools who voted for it) in the 2011 referendum, and they, like all good hungry lions, need MORE.

So he/they are setting the table for yet another referendum and, from the sounds of it, are just now trying to drum up support via “their community group” — already-overtaxed tree huggers who don’t get it and will blindly push for another theft by taxation — for yet another one in possibly 2016. He even has the gall to remind us that just about that time the taxpayer will start to experience some “relief” from the past thefts by tax courtesy of that governing body.

So what he is saying is that you and your wallet will feel better because you will get relief, but we don’t want you to get too comfortable, so we’re going to nail you again. Nice logic, Mr. Politician, nice logic. Perhaps, since you are so good at logic, can you explain how this (if it indeed does go through) will help, in any way, the financial condition of those many of us who are on fixed incomes. Perhaps all you really need to say is that “we want to be like Cook and DuPage counties, and have multi-thousands of acres of land that we acquired through theft tax.”

It’s time to rally the troops who are against theft by taxation.

Joe Miller


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