Days of Action Supports Mental Health Awareness 

(Posted Feb 25, 2011)

PEI UPSE and the national union’s (NUPGE) All Together Now campaign is in full swing and is calling on Islanders to support the national Days of Action from February 28 to March 6, 2011. The union is saying “no” to more corporate tax cuts and “yes” to more resources for mental health services.    

President Shelley Ward says “we are encouraging all Islanders to wear yellow on Tuesday, March 1, 2011 in support of mental health awareness on Prince Edward Island. Too many Islanders and Canadians are suffering in silence with mental health issues. One in five Canadians have a mental health problem, and two in three Canadians go undiagnosed.  Our loved ones, friends, and co-workers are in many cases not receiving the treatment they need to get better.”

Ward explains that “there is a growing crisis in mental health services in Canada. Our health care system and social services are being stretched to the limit, and as a result, many people with a mental illness end up homeless or in our correctional facilities. We need a mental health strategy in Canada. As is, we only have a patchwork of programs, all competing for limited resources.”    

“Our Governments know there is a problem; however, they tell Canadians they can’t afford to deal with the mental health care crisis. And yet, the Harper Conservatives are happy to hand out billions in tax cuts to large corporations. This is money that could have been used to expand mental health services and community treatment programs,” said Ward.

PEI UPSE invites all Islanders to attend a town hall meeting on mental health on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. (Murphy Centre, Charlottetown).  The keynote speaker is Sandy Naiman, an award winning journalist who worked at the Toronto Sun for thirty years and who lives with a mental illness. The town hall will also feature a panel discussion with experts in the mental health care field and individuals talking about their own battles with mental illness.


Please contact Mark Barrett at 892-5335 (or toll-free at 1-800- 897-8773) to arrange an interview.