Letter: Vote for Madison County’s mental health

Dear Editor,

Two years ago, I retired as a 30-year educator from the Jonathan Alder School District. My current position is that of an Ohio Certified Preventive Service Assistant, which allows me to service the London and Madison-Plains School Districts as a PAX Partner.

Being a kindergarten teacher at Monroe Elementary, for many years, was a heartfelt experience. Loving, touching lives of the “little ones,” and giving them their first school experience was a gift to me.

After raising three ornery boys on our family dairy farm, I felt that I had a good handle on my classroom control. However, certain situations would arise that caused anxiety with my “kindergarten family environment.”

Often, I sought new, behavioral genres that would help my students with self-regulation. In August of 2012, my paradigm for discipline changed! Our behavior specialist introduced us to the PAX Good Behavior Game, and through self-regulatory procedures, my students learned to “Own Their Behavior!”

Our current reality of drug and alcohol abuse, along with depression and anxiety, has become common threads throughout our society. Mental illness touches every family in one form or another. PAX is funded through the Mental Health & Recovery Board of Madison County. There is a renewal levy for Mental Health on the Nov. 3 ballot.

Consider the following facts:

• No new taxes. This is a 0.5 mill renewal levy.

• Madison County dollars are spent only on Madison County residents.

• This levy continues support for families with mental health and drug/alcohol problems.

• Cost to the average homeowner is less than $10 a year.

• Any decrease in funding will result in a decrease in services.

• Services were provided to over 2,000 Madison County residents and their families last year.

• Since 2009, demand for drug/alcohol treatment services has almost doubled and demand for mental health services has increased by 30 percent.

The mental health of Madison County residents and students depend on your vote. Please vote for mental health.

Susan M. Cutler

Plain City