Thank your for your excellent article regarding police and mental health collaboration in York County (“New intervention training helps police handle youth-in-crisis calls,” Oct. 5).

I want to follow up on this by informing readers of the availability of statewide crisis programs to respond to youth in crisis. Anyone can call (888) 568-1112 at any time, 24 hours a day, to talk with a crisis worker. A caller can receive a phone consultation or face-to-face crisis intervention.

Crisis workers, while not first responders such as police officers and firefighters, are trained to intervene on a wide range of issues, including oppositional behavior, aggression and property destruction, in addition to all mental health concerns. As we know, it is not black and white — either for the law or for mental health.

Often, the problematic social behavior has a mental health component — ADHD, depression, etc. A crisis worker is trained to assess the full situation and determine the appropriate recommendation, which sometimes involves consultation with police or the youth corrections officer.

Crisis workers help stabilize difficult situations, help families access services and develop plans to address the problem.

Crisis teams are also making a concerted effort to decrease the use of hospital emergency departments. When possible, we want to meet with kids and families in the community — home, school, etc.


When necessary, we work with police to stabilize a situation in the home before we arrive. While the police and crisis teams have different roles, they both have the same goal of helping youths decrease negative behavior and increase healthy, productive behaviors.

This kind of collaboration will be needed more and more as human service resources get scaled back and families endure greater stress.

Chris Taylor, LCSW, M.Ed.
clinical supervisor, Sweetser Crisis Team, Cumberland County

How did we get in the place where we find ourselves now?


“The modern conservative is engaged in the oldest of philosophical exercises — the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.” I’ve posted this quote by economist John Kenneth Galbraith above my desktop so that I can daily remind myself of the basic instinct so condensed and distilled in the libertarian movement.


The general difference between libertarians and the liberals boils down to the basic human instincts of selfishness versus generosity. This is why tea party libertarians, in particular, resist paying their taxes, defending their country or the Christian duty of helping their neighbor while insisting that each and every one of their self-indulgences be recognized as their birthright.

They are simple, petulant and spoiled children of a generation weaned on myths of exceptionalism and self-determination that have been dashed brutally on the reefs of their own mediocrity.

Lacking the social courage to humbly accept their own limitations, they must blame immigrants, the government or a liberal elite as the impediments to their dreams. Such a bitter brew!

John M. Flagler


“People are insecure. Their own money is tight and the current administration has not convinced them the nation will not go broke.” This is from a pollster, as quoted in the Press Herald (“GOP message resonates with many voters,” Oct. 13).


I had a hard time to stop laughing. Let’s review a typical middle-class family of four. Since 2008 they lost all the equity in their home, their retirement accounts are still down 43 percent, they owe $75,000 on credit cards that they can still pay the vig on (interest) and they worry every day about layoffs, outsourcing, closings and cutbacks.

Their net worth is minus $12,000, so by definition they are broke.

Now multiply these numbers by a trillion dollars and that’s where we are as a country, broke.

The Chinese and Saudis won’t call in our makers as long as we continue to pay them the vig. But we are quickly approaching the point as a nation where we will no longer be able to pay the vig to anybody.

Good luck to this administration on convincing anyone in this country we aren’t broke.

When you bet big and lose (the stimulus package) you don’t double down unless you plan on jumping off the nearest tall building after you lose again.


Michael Doyle


What a phenomenon: It’s the most widespread case of amnesia known to man. It seems to affect mostly Republicans and erupted the day after President Obama was inaugurated.

That was the day they started blaming the new president for our nation’s financial woes, forgetting completely the disastrous eight years of the previous administration that had brought us to this place.

The truth is that the Republicans, because of their collective amnesia, have never acknowledged just what a total failure their president was in just about every area of his administration, from backpedaling on critical environmental issues to initiating a tragic war based on lies to blatantly approving policies favoring the wealthy and large corporations.

And they just hate the idea of this new, dynamic and articulate president from the other side of the political fence succeeding where they failed so dismally.


So rather than support him in any way, they just keep criticizing — more a reflection on themselves than on the president.

So what is it that makes them think that another Republican administration can extricate us from the problems brought on by the previous Republican administration? Amnesia does strange things to one’s perspective.

Sally Trice


Yikes! Why would anyone go to war with the Chamber of Commerce?

Robert Zitzow



I am not a professional economist, but it is pretty obvious to me that it’s a bad idea to raise taxes during tough times. Especially when those taxes would hit small businesses particularly hard, making it hard for them to keep folks employed.

Maine counts on small-business owners to create the jobs we desperately need. If Congress lets taxes go up in January by letting the current rates expire, those businesses will have to fork more over to government and have less to invest back into their own growth. This can only lead to one thing — fewer jobs for Maine.

I would ask Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe to lead the charge in Congress to protect our businesses from a massive tax hike and vote to extend the rates beyond this year.

William Hamill


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