Editorial summary Georgia | The Sacramento Bee

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Brunswick News. December 28, 2021.

Editorial: Georgian lawmakers face crisis

A question posed as early as the first century by Plutarch and other Greek philosophers – “What comes first, the chicken or the egg?” – animates debate among state legislators more than 20 centuries later. They are grappling with the same dilemma in a genuine attempt to tackle the mental health crisis in this state.

This member of the Southeastern United States ranks lowest among all states and the District of Columbia for mental health services available to citizens in distress. Lawmakers are finally starting to try to do something concrete on the issue other than simply throwing those who display aberrant behavior behind bars.

One potential aid highlighted during discussions about improving services is the triple-digit mental health crisis helpline, which is expected to go live nationwide this summer.

Great idea, lawmakers agree, with the exception of one problem: Georgia lacks the resources, professionals and other qualified personnel to handle the heavy workloads that could come with the new service.

Of course, this is nothing new. Those responsible for making policy and law in that state have known this for a long time. This is one of the many reasons why so many citizens with mental health issues end up in city and county jails. In short, there is no one to help them.

In fact, while the number of addiction and mental health issues increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of men and women with the education and experience to deal with these issues did not. has not increased.

Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disorders Commissioner Judy Fitzgerald reports a 24% increase in contacts made with the state’s mental health crisis line since the start of the pandemic. Combine this disturbing data with a 36% increase in drug overdose deaths and the loss of nearly 1,000 workers at the state’s five mental hospitals over the past year, and it’s clear that lawmakers have to. we have our work cut out for it.

It takes more than a national hotline or lip service. The state needs a plan to attract more mental health professionals and workers to its network.

If it’s a competitive salary, so be it. Georgia has a revenue surplus. Use some of it to help those who are unable to help themselves.

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Dalton Daily Citizen. December 28, 2021.

Editorial: When temperatures drop, remember to be careful with home heating equipment

The last week of December usually brings freezing temperatures to our part of North Georgia. However, highs this week through Saturday are expected to be in the 1970s with lows in the mid-1950s before the thermometer begins to drop Sunday through next week.

While you may not be using your fireplace, furnace, or space heaters to heat your home now, it is advisable to remember to be extremely careful when using home heating equipment this winter.

“If used carelessly, heating equipment such as radiators and fireplaces can become a fire hazard,” said John F. King, Georgia Fire and Safety Commissioner.

Heating equipment is one of the leading causes of residential fires in the United States. Data from the National Fire Prevention Association shows that local fire departments responded to an annual average of 48,530 fires resulting from negligent use of heating between 2014 and 2018. These fires killed 500, injured 1,350 and $ 1.1 billion in property damage.

Due to the risk of heating equipment, King offered these tips to keep you and your home safe this winter:

• Have the chimney and fittings of your fireplace or wood stove inspected and cleaned at the start of the heating season.

• Do not plug heating equipment into extension cords. This can cause the cord to overheat, damage the appliance, and an increased risk of fire or electric shock.

• Move anything that can burn (eg furniture, bedding, clothing) at least one meter away from your furnace, fireplace or wood stove – 54% of deaths from home heating fires were caused by having heating equipment too close to burning objects.

• Keep children and pets away from your portable or space heater.

• Turn off your portable or backup heater before leaving the room.

• Never use your oven to heat your home.

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Rome News-Tribune. December 25, 2021.

Editorial: This Christmas, let’s take the time to cherish those we have lost and celebrate what we have

Christmas is and always has been a family matter. This is the time when we come together with our loved ones and share that spirit of unity that keeps us going for another year.

As with everything human, it’s what’s inside that really matters. Christmas has become a universal time of hope, peace and goodwill. Like all beautifully wrapped gifts this season, you have to remove the knots and tear the paper apart to find out what’s really inside.

In a sense, he transcended his religious origins. It is the spirit of the thing, the hope and the humanity espoused by Jesus Christ. Now is not the time to exclude other faiths, races or ethnicities. Now is the time to emulate what religion is in its best and purest form: goodwill for all.

Let the division that has characterized much of this year fade away and let this day be a call for what next year could potentially bring.

Many people will not be able to see their loved ones this Christmas.

We are still in the midst of a pandemic; we have lost so many of those who have strived to make our community what it is now that it can be disheartening at times.

While this is the case, please put the rhetoric aside, even if it’s only for a day. Christmas is a time of unity and peace.

Christmas has become a time when we must do something to help those in need find a way to share the universal warmth and good feelings of the holiday. We’ve seen it with numerous food drives, a massive Toys for Tots program, and the Sheriff Santa program – all funded by the locals to help the locals.

Christmas has become a time to remember loved ones and friends, near and far, with expressions of affection whether in gifts or greeting cards. It has become, more than any other time or celebration, a time when we are all one people, regardless of nationality, race, religion or ethnicity.

It’s a time when the power is with us – the power of shared emotions, shared feelings, shared concerns, shared hopes, shared burdens, shared solutions, shared love. Christmas has come to represent hope. He has come to amplify the importance of improving the human condition.

This is the real Christmas present.

Remember what today stands for. A very long time ago a tiny little baby was born into a fairly humble environment. But he was and continues to be a symbol of redemption, forgiveness, love, peace, charity and hope.

While purists may lament its increasingly commercialized nature, there is a deep human need for Christmas. The religious meaning of Christmas, with its message of hope both on Earth and in the Hereafter, should never be overshadowed by what the holiday has evolved into. Still, there is a big and wonderful message to be taken from the independent presence of Santa Claus, Rudolph, and all of their goblins and assorted finery of the season.

Whatever your beliefs, we wish you and your family a most wonderful and joyful Christmas. And in the spirit of loving your neighbor – ALL your neighbors – we wish you what we would wish for ourselves. That is, health and hope, success and much happiness for the coming year.

TO FINISH

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