Letter: Manitoulin is not immune to despair

A need for an all-inclusive networking system of looking out for each other

To the Expositor:

It may be a good thing to stay home for the holidays this year. All this rushing around multi-tasking drains the brain. And what is really important slips quietly away, unnoticed, as most things do.

‘The Shadow Epidemic’ contributed 3,600 deaths to suicide in Canada What is more surprising is the average mean are young men between the ages of 19-35. In an interview with The Current on December 14, 2020, the mayor of Medicine Hat, Ted Clausen, confirmed that suicide rates far exceeded COVID deaths in that city.

What is the significance of those numbers when compared to the recent pandemic strategies employed by the federal and provincial governments. For various reasons, I am skeptical of the panacea being offered in the form of an inadequately tested vaccine as a solution to these problems. We have past the point of no return. Many families have suffered too much loss to fully recuperate. Many small businesses have closed with no future of reopening. The restructuring of our economy will be long and painful. We have in fact become wards of the government with subsidies doled out at the ministers’ pleasure.

We are not immune to this apparent despair on Manitoulin. Recent deaths on the Island have been attributed to suicide. There have been foreclosures. And there will be many more to come. There have been job losses with the expectation of more to follow. What is important is that we form an all-inclusive networking system of looking out for each other. This is not something new. This is the way our grandmothers survived many past hardships.

Perhaps then we will not be seeing picnic tables in Little Current being overturned; covered in a plastic tarp to act as temporary shelters for those who have no home to go to for the holidays.

Lee Weimer

Manitowaning