The Lakeville Journal Editorial

Keep mental health care accessible

Anyone who has had to contend with the repercussions of either their own or a loved one’s mental illness knows too well that the length of time it takes to have access to help in emergency situations, or even just day to day, can make a real difference to eventual outcome. In the Northwest Corner, there used to be access to organized mental health support that was not the norm in such a rural area. However, in the past decade, that has dwindled, making it harder to find help. 

A common goal: student success

What is more important to parents than the happiness and all-around health and well-being of their children? This universal sense is a strong motivator that keeps human society moving forward. Watching the next generations find their way in the world can inspire all adults, whether those younger people are part of their own families or someone else’s. 

A local problem in need of solutions, plus one big success

Some challenges to rural living have changed over the years, and others have not. Some of the amenities of urban life are available more widely now than in the past, mainly to do with communication and information, via cable and the internet. But then, public transportation is no longer an option, as it was when the trains ran throughout the region. 

Supporting our most vulnerable citizens: young children

This week, April 24 to 28, is the national Week of the Young Child, which is sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) to draw attention to the needs of young children and their families across the country. 

Thanking the thankless, for a change

When Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau did it, his people and the world loved him for it. When Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy did it, his popularity just fell more in his state. 

That is, many constituents did not applaud Malloy’s willingness to accept Syrian refugees into Connecticut when they were turned away from Indiana in the fearful aftermath of the 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris. At least he was chosen, in 2016, to receive a well-deserved John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage award for it. 

To have, or not to have, a hospital?

That was the theme of the four-and-a-half hour public hearing held April 5 at the Sharon Town Hall. 

There, representatives from Connecticut’s Office of Health Care Access (OHCA) came to hear from area residents and interested parties about their opinions on the sale of Sharon Hospital to Health Quest (see the article by Cynthia Hochswender on Page A1.) 

Budgets! (Bored yet?)

Northwest Corner towns are pretty fortunate in their governance at this moment. The six municipalities generally have committed selectmen who work hard to try to find the best options for their communities, and they seem relatively undaunted by the challenges they face this year in their budget planning. 

But they still must make some very difficult decisions as they try to foresee the future and successfully predict what the state of Connecticut will do in trying to address its own future shortfall. Really, not boring, right?

Change delayed but inevitable at high school

The unraveling of the initiative to implement a new 4x4 schedule at Housatonic Valley Regional High School (HVRHS) as early as September should be taken as confirmation that it’s always good to find ways to listen to one another, even in the most difficult circumstances. 

Changes at Sharon Hospital: Do your part

When Mike Browder, the executive vice president and chief financial officer of RCCH Health Care Partners, the current ownership group of Sharon Hospital, who has been involved with the hospital all the way back to Essent’s ownership, says it doesn’t make sense for his group to keep running the hospital, he should be believed. 

Sunshine Week: Time to think about open government

Discussions of and decisions on the state, town and educational budgets are a large part of the conversation in Northwest Corner towns right now, as evidenced in recent articles in this newspaper. And there will be more such coverage in the weeks to come, as approved budgets go to public hearings and then final votes. The outcome of all of these budgets has the specter of the looming state budget cuts and increased costs (for items like one-third of teachers’ pensions) hanging over them.