In America today, about 45 million people suffer with a mental health issue, and 1 in 25 adults experience a serious mental illness that interferes substantially with one or more major life activities. Sadly, the suicide rate is at a 30-year high.

While more people are getting help, an astounding 9 million are struggling with unmet needs. As chief executive of Palmetto Lowcountry Behavioral Health, I and my staff are serving many members of our community who are experiencing some of the most challenging times of their lives: mental illnesses that are often invisible to the casual observer.

May is Mental Health Awareness month, providing an important opportunity for reflection and collective action to address barriers, including persistent stigmatization and stereotyping that prevent many individuals from getting the care they need.

What can we do within our communi-

ties to recognize the signs of mental

health issues and assist those in need of

care and treatment?

• Listen and show understanding. If you suspect a loved one is struggling with a mental health challenge, offer to listen and encourage them to seek professional help.

• Share the Lifeline number, (800) 273-8255. It’s a free, 24/7 confidential support line. Military veterans can press “1” for dedicated support.

Suicide affects all demographics: different ages, races, ethnicities, sexual orientations and occupations.

• In case of emergency, dial 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. Suicide is often preventable when people at risk receive the support they need.

Each of us can play a positive role in improving the lives of millions of Americans suffering with ental health challenges, not just this month but every month in every community across the country.

GREGORY GWISC

Director of Business Development

Palmetto Lowcountry Behavioral Health

Speissegger Drive

Charleston

Beacon of principle

The framers of the U.S. Constitution gave Congress a duty to provide a beacon of principle and democratic values to the American people.

But some Democrats in Congress think it’s a good idea do away with the

Electoral College and to

let felons in our prisons vote.

The Democratic Party of 2018 has its beacon pointing in the wrong direction.

The last words from Caesar to Brutus in Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” were, “We must take the current when it serves us or lose our ventures.” After Caesar was removed from office, the Roman Empire started a downward spiral. History does indeed repeat itself.

DENNIS L. COMPTON

Filly Court

North Charleston

Crosswalk danger

In reference to the May 7 Post and Courier article by Gregory Yee advising pedestrians to use crosswalks, I note that even a crosswalk is no guarantee that a driver will stop.

I often jog on the multiuse path on Fort Johnson Road on James Island.

The path is on the north side of the road from Dills Bluff to Grand Concourse, where it reappears on the south side (where Grand Concourse becomes Bayview Farms Boulevard) going east.

There is a crosswalk there, near James Island Charter High School.

I come to the crosswalk but don’t dare enter as drivers rarely give any indication of yielding the right of way.

With regard to this, I note the following S.C. statute:

Section 2, Section 56-5-3130(a) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:

(a) When traffic-control signals are not in place or not in operation, the driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way, slowing down or stopping if need be, to yield to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a crosswalk when the pedestrian is upon the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling or when the pedestrian is approaching so closely from the opposite half of the roadway as to be in danger.

IRVING S. ROSENFELD

Simpkins Street

James Island

Barr in contempt

Gee, U.S. Attorney General William Barr has been cited for contempt of Congress.

That didn’t take long. He has now joined the assorted bottom feeders of the Trump administration.

Their playroom is way beyond a swamp.

Over yonder playing mud cakes are U.S. Sens. Lindsey Graham and Tim Scott.

Congress should now do to William Barr what they did in the early 1900s.

Have a congressional sergeant-at-arms go over to the Department of Justice, pull Barr out of his comfy chair, and march him to a hearing.

STEVEN TAYLOR

Country Manor Drive

Mount Pleasant

Bags of trash

The roadside along S.C. Highway 61 from Bees Ferry Road north to Muirfield Parkway was cleaned of litter by volunteers on May 4.

The orange bags of debris were neatly stacked in multiple locations awaiting pickup. 

It has now been two weeks, and the bags are

being ripped open by nocturnal animals and the trash scattered by the wind.

It’s sad to see city trash trucks drive by these bags and to think the work of these volunteers will be for naught.

Is it so hard to coordinate the pickup of these orange bags?

I appreciate the efforts of these volunteers and can only imagine how they feel.

MARY VOGEL

Vaucluse Road

Charleston

‘Self-inspection’

After World War II, automotive engineer W. Edward Demming tried selling

quality control to the U.S. auto industry, which rejected it.

Instead, Demming successfully sold it to Japan. Soon, cars such as Toyotas outsold U.S. cars and bested them in price, reliability, safety, longevity and maintenance.

Along came Ernesto Gonzalez-Beltran and New Motor Manufacturing Inc. (NUMMI), a joint venture of Toyota and General Motors.

He set up “lean manufacturing” to turn out more cars. But he insisted that errors would be detected anyway.

An unsuccessful whistleblower lawsuit exposed undetected, dangerous defects at NUMMI.

Toyota subsequently

instituted massive recalls, and NUMMI went south.

Gonzalez-Beltran is now a vice president at Boeing, promoting “self-inspection” in the 787 model.

Boeing, GM, Toyota and the rest of the corporate world must reconsider Demming’s ideas.

STEVE RAYNOR

Basildon Road

Mount Pleasant

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