Re: “WA to get $183M from Purdue Pharma settlement, more than double original proposal” [March 3, Local News]:
What to do with this money? It is intended for addiction treatment, but the state should also try actually spending serious money on mental-health issues. I admit there has been some progress, but it’s like taking sand from the Sahara — you don’t even notice.
Over the years, the state has received large increased tax income from all forms of gambling. In addition, it has received a good share of taxes following the legalization of marijuana. Each time there is mention by the state and counties of “this time we are going to upgrade our mental-health system” — always talk but not yet.
Experts say that much of the homeless, crime issue and drug issues involve a disturbing component of mental health.
This state needs, in no particular order: a new state hospital (Western State should be used for future horror moves); new mental-health offices with temporary housing staffed by mental-health workers; more money for mental-health workers in jails, prisons, hospitals and schools.
Stop the talk and just do it. If not now, when? If not when, why?