April 16, 2007
Tragedy at Virginia Tech
Our hearts go out to all the families and friends of the victims of the tragedy at Virginia Tech.
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24 months ago in a small Minnesota town, a mentally unstable student murdered and wounded 14 students before killing himself. www.invisiblechildren.org/weblog (april 2005 posting).
Jeff Weise also kept an outrageous website openly referencing homicide and suicide. Jeff was also denied treatment and prescribed Prozac*. After the carnage, Red Lake community found the money for a mental health family center to counsel troubled youth.
At that time in Minnesota there were 15 child psychiatrists in the entire state (population about 4 million) and the student to counsellor ratio in MN high schools was 900 to 1.
As a long time child advocate (guardian ad Litem) I strongly feel the need for mental health therapy for those who need it. A county judge has shared with me the psychotropic drug medications being taken by children in her courtroom. It is truely unbelievable how many undertreated disturbed youth walk among us.
Had the attention to mental health services come earlier, the community could have saved itself from the immense suffering that follows these horrific events.
We owe it to our children and ourselves to take mental health seriously. Our nation falls far short of adequately addressing the needs of at risk children and for that we pay a terrible price.
Posted by: mike t | Apr 25, 2007 8:03:50 AM